Sports researcher wins talent award for sclerosis research

Ph.D. student Tobias Gæmelke from Aarhus University received the prestigious talent award for his research on elderly individuals with multiple sclerosis on June 1, 2024. The award was presented by the Danish Society for Research in Multiple Sclerosis and the Danish MS Society.

Tobias Gæmelke received the first prize from the vice-chair of the Danish MS Society, Malene Kappen Krüger (center), at the annual research meeting of the Danish multiple sclerosis doctors. Also pictured is Melinda Magyari (right), chair of the board of the Danish Society for Research in Multiple Sclerosis and organizer of the research meeting. Photo: Tobias Sejbæk.

Nearly three million people worldwide suffer from the autoimmune and neurodegenerative disease multiple sclerosis (MS), with one-third of them being 60 years of age or older. Although there is evidence that exercise has positive effects on individuals with multiple sclerosis, it has not previously been studied in the older segment of this patient group.

“Our study is the first research project to examine the effect of power training as a secondary and tertiary treatment for elderly individuals diagnosed with the disease,” explains Tobias Gæmelke from the Department of Public Health.

Power training is a specific form of exercise based on strength training with high loads and fast movements. The researchers conducted the study as a classic randomized trial, comparing 24 weeks of power training with a control group.

“The study shows that power training is safe and effective for elderly people with multiple sclerosis, leading to positive effects on their muscle strength and physical function. We also investigated whether power training had an effect on the participants' cognitive function, but this could not be demonstrated,” says Tobias Gæmelke.

Along with the award, he receives 50,000 DKK, sponsored by the Multiple Sclerosis Association. The second prize of 25,000 DKK was awarded to Frederik Elberling, Ph.D., and senior researcher at the Danish Multiple Sclerosis Registry.

The coverage is partially based on press material from the Danish MS Society.


Ph.D. student Tobias Gæmelke
Aarhus University, Department of Public Health
Phone: (+45) 28 26 45 08