SCaRLeT: Sex differences in Cardiovascular Risk across Life course Transitions

Heart disease is still the leading cause of death around the world. Preventing heart disease, by focusing on risk factors like smoking is essential for improving population health. Females and males do not experience heart disease equally. In adults, research suggests risk factors that can be changed like smoking do not have the same impact on heart disease risk in females and males. However, it is not clear if these differences arise because females and males differ in ways such as the size of their hearts, their hormone levels and their genetics or because of errors in research. Risk factors for heart disease like smoking start in childhood. However, we don't understand how risk factors like this during childhood and adolescence relate to differences in the risk of heart disease in females and males throughout life. Furthermore, the ways that risk factors such as smoking link to disease in females and males may differ but there is a lack of studies that help us to understand how each risk factor leads to heart disease in each sex. A better understanding of the relationship between risk factors like smoking and heart disease risk in females and males throughout life can inform prevention of CVD, by targeting the most important risk factors in each sex at a time in life where they are likely to have greatest effect. This project aims to improve understanding of how risk factors that can be prevented and changed relate to heart disease risk in females and males, throughout life, using many different approaches in world-leading studies. This can inform new ways to address these important heart disease risk factors, which are still the greatest driver of heart disease today in the population.

Award Date
15 May 2019
Award Value
Principal Investigator
Dr Linda O'Keeffe
Host Institution
University College Cork
Emerging Investigator Awards