Researchers gear up for cardio fitness study - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

Accessibility links

USC News

Researchers gear up for cardio fitness study

24 Feb 2016

A University of the Sunshine Coast research group is seeing if pedal power could help make inroads into the treatment of a potentially deadly cardiovascular condition.

USC’s VasoActive research group has shifted into the second phase of a major study investigating the kinds of exercise that could be used to improve symptoms and vascular health for people living with small abdominal aortic aneurysm, known as AAA.

Described as a “ticking time bomb” condition, AAA is the enlargement of a major blood vessel in the abdomen that is most commonly diagnosed in men aged over 60.

Having already conducted dozens of fitness tests on AAA patients, the researchers are now looking for healthy volunteers to complete a short cycling session as part of the study.

Researchers are seeking men and women aged between 70 and 86 years, not currently smokers and not doing more than 150 minutes of exercise per week.

USC Associate Professor Chris Askew said studying how healthy people responded to the testing would be critical to determining which exercises were most effective in treating AAA.

“We know that fitness can improve survival and quality of life in people suffering from this condition, and we want to see which types of exercises have the greatest influence on inflammation and vascular stiffness,” he said.

“Patients with AAA live with the risk that the aneurysm can rupture, which can have devastating consequences.

“Currently, we’re looking for volunteers to do two short cycling tests, followed by 90 minutes of recovery under lab supervision. Their participation will be critical to the success of the study.”

Volunteers can register their interest at For more details, contact PhD researcher Mark Windsor at or on 0413 177 451.

— Gen Kennedy

A VasoActive researcher checking the equipment on a study participant.

Related articles

USC joins $9m global sustainability research program
9 Jul

USC researchers on the Sunshine Coast and in Sweden are taking part in an A$9.2million international program to transform communication of environmental and sustainability issues, such as climate change.

New research centre to harness strengths across cultures
6 Jul

Australians may be facing restrictions on travel, but the opportunity to learn from all cultures is already on our doorstep, say the leaders of a new research group at USC Australia.

Researchers study drivers’ responses to suspension of random breath testing
23 Jun

Road safety researchers at USC Australia are keen to find out how driver behaviours changed during a temporary suspension of static roadside random breath testing (RBT) by the Queensland Police Service during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Contact the USC media team

Name Position Email Phone
Terry Walsh Manager, Media and Messaging +61 7 5430 1160
Janelle Kirkland Media Relations Coordinator +61 7 5459 4553
Clare McKay Media Relations Officer (Regional) +61 7 5456 5669

Search results for

Recent news