Skip to navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer

Approved Research

Exposure of cardiovascular risk factors to cerebrovascular events and cognitive impairment from midlife to the late adults-UK Biobank

Principal Investigator: Professor Jianbo Zhou
Approved Research ID: 92858
Approval date: October 11th 2022

Lay summary

I am interested in the role of risk factors in the cerebrovascular development from the midlife to late adulthood. So a prospective cohort design from 2007 to the present is performed. Efforts to understand the determinants of cerebral decline and quantify specific brain effects are urgently needed, especially with respect to modifiable factors which offer relatively direct pathways to intervention.

Though the specific mechanisms by which vascular risk factors (VRFs) to cerebrovascular events and brain structure, remain to be fully elucidated. We quantify the contribution of vascular risk factors to cerebrovascular events defined by brain MRI. We explore the hypothesis that different VRFs may be more important for cerebrovascular events and brain structure in midlife than in later life. At the same time, exposure to vascular risk factors is a cumulative process. Characterizing the cumulative exposure to vascular risk factors before and after the development of diabetes may inform our understanding of sex and age disparities in cerebrovascular events. We may expect if men have worse cerebrovascular risk factor profiles than women before the development of diabetes and then the impact of developing diabetes on subsequent cerebrovascular risk is worse for women than men. This association merits consideration in young adults. Whether this exposure is differential after the development of diabetes and how the baseline exposures impact sex (and age) differences in risk for cerebrovascular merit investigation.

I hope this project could enlighten the effect of the risk factors on the personal cerebrovascular outcomes progression. In the longer term, identifying subgroups based on risk factors that benefit most from lifestyle interventions could help personalize prevention strategies of cerebrovascular diseases. Furthermore, personalized prevention and treatment strategies could help motivate individuals more efficiently compared with general guidelines.