The University of Minnesota has been awarded more than $4 million to study risk factors for Alzheimer's disease.
The U of M is among a group of five academic medical centers that will share a $26 million dollar grant from the National Institutes of Health.
The grant renews a large multi-state study, that initially tracked heart disease and stroke among roughly 16,000 patients for 20 years. About 4,000 of those patients are Minnesota residents.
The U of M said the new version of the study will include detailed brain testing and imaging. Researchers hope that information, when combined with the earlier study data, will shed more light on the causes of dementia. They are especially interested in the role that hypertension, diabetes and other vascular conditions play in cognitive decline.
Previous findings have suggested that vascular problems may predict declines in memory and processing speed later in life.