Female Brain and Endocrinological Research Veteran Study: Identifying endocrinological, lifestyle and psychosocial determinants of female brain health outcomes for future intervention success

Tamlyn J. Watermeyer*, Paul Ansdell, Elliott Atkinson, Gill McGill, Christina Dodds, Glyn Howatson, Chi T. Udeh‐Momoh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Recent studies have demonstrated a greater risk for dementia in female veterans compared to civilians; with highest prevalence noted for female veterans with a diagnosis of psychiatric (trauma, alcoholism, depression), and/or a physical health condition (brain injury, insomnia, diabetes). Such findings highlight the need for increased and early screening of medical and psychiatric conditions, and indeed dementia, in the female veteran population. Further, they call for better understanding of the underlying psychobiological mechanisms that might confer heightened risk for female veterans to prepare tailored preventative and interventional strategies that support brain health across the lifespan.

Our feasibility study will create an innovative highly-phenotyped readiness cohort of female veterans to assess the impacts of, and risks associated with, military service on brain health, using state-of-the-art non-invasive cognitive, physiological and biomarker capture techniques.

FEMBER-Vet will include 90 participants across study groups (30 female veterans, 30 male veterans, 30 female civilians) to delineate the precise biological, socio-demographic, health, lifestyle, military-related, and lifetime determinants of brain health outcomes (psychosocial, cognitive, neurophysiological, and other biomarkers).

This work addresses the poorly understood biopsychosocial outcomes that female veterans suffer compared to male counterparts and the general female population. Ultimately, it will promote tailored interventions for an emerging health priority that currently lacks sufficient evidence for screening and therapeutic intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere075651
Number of pages1
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia
Issue numberS18
Early online date25 Dec 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

Cite this