Social inequities are known risks for many poor health outcomes such as vascular brain disease and dementia. The roles of social inequities and vascular brain disease are poorly understood in dementia manifesting before the age of 65, aka early age of onset dementia or EOD. The primary research question we aim to answer is: "Is vascular brain injury an important mechanism of early age of onset dementia in individuals of north-African and middle east origin?"
Our project will assess the clinical manifestation of dementia, age of dementia onset, changes evident on brain scans in an underrepresented ethnic-racial population afflicted by social inequities: individuals of Middle East & North African origin (MENA) Israelis. Our study will compare these clinical features in individuals with mild dementia of MENA and European origin, and of early and late age of onset. Our study will also assess the contribution of social inequities in determining clinical and brain scans characteristics in dementia, and by this infer on the mechanism causing dementia in this population. We expect to find vascular brain injury is an important mechanism to early onset dementia in MENA with social inequities. Such findings will alter our understanding of brain diseases that cause dementia, highlight the importance of public health interventions for preventing cognitive decline, and could potentially influence treatment in diverse and disparate populations.