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Purpose of the study

The purpose of this study is to investigate whether the way blood naturally clots can affect the health of the blood vessels around the body and in the brain, and how this relates to cognitive function in older life.

Previous research has shown that cardiovascular health conditions (like high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes) are linked to brain health and cognitive function in older adults. There is some evidence that certain regions of the brain that are involved in memory may be particularly affected. However, it is not known exactly how blood vessel health can affect the brain. In particular, it isn’t known whether overall cardiovascular health affects only the blood vessels in the brain, the brain cells, or the ability for blood vessels and brain cells to work together in a co-ordinated way.

This research study will investigate these relationships. One of the goals of the study is to see if there are substances in the blood that can help to identify and protect individuals at risk of developing brain health problems in later life.

The HAVEN Study - Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (

Are you eligible to take part in the HAVEN study?

You are eligible to take part in this study if you are over 50 years of age.

You are NOT eligible to take part in this study if you have any of the following:

  • Any clinically diagnosed psychiatric or neurological conditions (e.g., schizophrenia, depression, autism, etc.).
  • Diagnosed cardiovascular disease, diabetes, liver disease, or hypertension.
  • Diagnosed bleeding disorder (e.g., platelet function defects, haemophilia etc.).
  • Any metal implanted in your body.
  • Currently take anticoagulant or antiplatelet medication (e.g., Clopidigrel, Ticagrelor, warfarin, Rivoroxaban etc.).
  • Suffer from claustrophobia (the brain scanner is an enclosed space).

What will I have to do if I take part?

Participation in the study will require you to visit the University of Reading on two occasions, for approximately 2.5 hours each time. Information about each of the procedures in the study is provided below.

Join the HAVEN study - Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (

For more information, please email

Current studies