Our research

The ACES research group consists of world-class clinical and basic science researchers. The ACES team has a strong track record with peer-reviewed publications in top-level general, radiological, sports medicine and orthopedic journals, including the NEJM, JAMA and BMJ. Our multidisciplinary research projects focus on clinical care and prevention of injuries and illnesses in athletes.

Our research is incorporated in The Amsterdam Movement Sciences (AMS) and The Amsterdam Collaboration on Health & Safety in Sports (ACHSS) research program.

AMS is a collaboration between the Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences (FGB) at VU Amsterdam and the Amsterdam University Medical Centers (Amsterdam UMC).

ACHSS is a collaboration between the Academic Medical Center and the Free University Medical Center. ACHSS was accredited in 2015 and 2019 as one of only 11 IOC Research Centers for Prevention of Injury and Protection of Athlete Health.

Research lines

The athletes presenting their clinical problems serve to focus our research lines. For ongoing research projects, see below.

Cartilage – Ankle joint disorders

ACES is world leading in the research on osteochondral defects, impingement and sprains of the ankle. We have introduced new imaging protocols, arthroscopic techniques (e.g. waterjet based surgical drill), animal models and clinical guidelines as well as clinical evaluation of early stage and fully development technologies (e.g. EXO-L brace).

Muscle, Tendon & Ligaments – Hamstrings, Achilles, Ankle & Knee

Within ACES the focus of research on muscles and tendons is predominantly on the hamstring muscles and Achilles tendon. Both acute and chronic injuries are studied for which new MRI techniques and rehabilitation and prevention protocols are developed.

Preventing Injury and Protecting Health of Athletes

ACES conduct long-term monitoring studies on the physical and mental health of athletes. Through prospective case series, we identify the potential risk factors for musculoskeletal injuries. Large scale randomized controlled trials are conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of injury prevention programs.

Bone – Ankle, Foot & Elbow

A direct link to high performance athletes is the treatment and prevention of (stress) fractures. The fundamental focus is on the determinants of bone healing and growth factors and the imaging of bone with dual energy and submillimetric CT scanning.