Osteoporosis and Bone Biology

The Garvan Institute of Medical Research is dedicated to improving the diagnosis, treatment and quality of life for people affected by skeletal disorders through fundamental discoveries and innovative applications in laboratory and clinical research. There is a particular emphasis on osteoporosis and cancers that grow in bone, including multiple myeloma, as well as breast and prostate cancer bone metastasis.

Our researchers use a variety of approaches to understand the fundamental basis for skeletal disorders. These include new screening techniques, advanced genetic analysis, the latest methods for working with the critical cells that maintain our skeletons, novel high-resolution microscopy to study individual bone cells in living tissues and sophisticated animal models of disease.

Our new insights are being used to develop novel approaches to treatment in our model systems, before translating discoveries into studies in the clinic. We are utilising our large clinical cohort, established over many decades, to predict those who will suffer from fragility fractures in the future, understand why various forms of fracture cause premature death and identify who will most benefit from treatment. We aim to use our new understanding to inform changes in policy and practice that benefit the maximum number of individuals with skeletal disorders. We are also using novel techniques to study how and why cancer cells grow and survive in bone, which will lead to better treatments.