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Her research, funded primarily by the National Institutes of Health, focuses on the vascular contribution to cognitive impairment and dementia, including Alzheimer's disease, and she uses brain imaging within cohorts such as ARIC to understand a mechanism for a vascular impact on Alzheimer's Disease. In a study published in JAMA, she linked heart risks to the brain plaques of Alzheimer's, finding that compared to people with no midlife risk factors, suffering from obesity, smoking or having high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes had an 88 percent increased risk of elevated levels of plaques, a hallmark of Alzheimer's. Those with two or more risk factors had triple the risk.
- Bakalar, Nicholas (2017-04-12). "Heart Risks in Midlife Tied to Brain Plaques of Alzheimer's". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-04-05.
- Rettner, Rachael; February 22, Senior Writer |; ET, 2017 06:30pm. "Healthy Heart in Midlife May Lower Dementia Risk Later". Live Science. Retrieved 2019-04-05.
- "American Stroke Association honors 10 for outstanding stroke research | American Heart Association". newsroom.heart.org. Retrieved 2019-04-05.
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