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University of Miami, Collaborators Win $46M NIH Grant for Alzheimer's Disease Genetic Study

NEW YORK — The University of Miami said on Tuesday that its Miller School of Medicine and collaborators have received a $46 million grant from the National Institute on Aging to study the genetics of Alzheimer's disease in people of Hispanic and African ancestry.

Other institutes participating in the research initiative include Case Western Reserve University, Columbia University, Wake Forest University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Ibadan in Nigeria.

According to the University of Miami, the project aims to recruit and analyze data on 5,000 people from different African countries, 4,000 African Americans, and 4,000 Hispanic and Latino individuals. Data collected will include clinical, phenotypic, and genetic data, as well as social determinants of health factors. This information will be added to existing databases of harmonized data from other studies that are part of the National Institutes of Health's Alzheimer's Disease Sequencing Project.

"We know risk due to genetic factors varies greatly across ancestral groups," Brian Kunkle, assistant professor of human genetics at the University of Miami's John P. Hussman Institute for Human Genomics, said in a statement. "However, research on groups with primarily African, Hispanic, and Latinx ancestry is limited. Expanding studies in these populations will be vital for developing prevention and treatment strategies that work for everyone."

Also participating in the initiative are 10 institutions across Africa: University of Ghana College of Health Sciences, Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Makerere University, University of Parakou, University of Yaounde, University of Nairobi, Eduardo Mondlane University, Kilimanjaro Christian Medical College, and Addis Ababa University.