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Research and new developments

The Arthritis Research UK-MRC Centre for Musculoskeletal Health and Work, based at the University of Southampton, is a world-leading centre focused on addressing major research questions to reduce the impact of musculoskeletal disorders such as back pain and arthritis in the workplace.

By collaborating with teams across the UK, the centre aims to:

  • identify cost-effective ways to minimise the impact of musculoskeletal conditions in the workplace
  • train a future generation of researchers in this field
  • establish a national resource for advice on musculoskeletal health and work, accessible to Government, employers, workers, healthcare professionals and patients, and actively promote best work and clinical practice.

Back pain, arthritis and other conditions of musculoskeletal pain are some of the main causes of work disability in the UK, accounting for the loss of 10 million working days per year at a cost of £7 billion. However, there are currently major deficiencies in scientific evidence that would inform policies and interventions aimed at reducing this burden.

By using the breadth of knowledge and skills developed at the centre, the main musculoskeletal causes of work impairment can be better recognised and understood.

The work of this centre will enable workplace and work-related musculoskeletal conditions to be properly addressed, reducing the number of working days lost to these conditions and benefiting patients, workers, employers, and society at large.


0800 5200 520

Our new helpline: Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis. Open Mon–Fri 9am–8pm.

All calls are recorded for training and quality purposes

Virtual Assistant

Our new Arthritis Virtual Assistant uses artificial intelligence to answer your arthritis related questions 24/7.

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Arthritis Research UK fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis. You can support Arthritis Research UK by volunteering, donating or visiting our shops.