Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) such as coronary artery disease, heart failure, and stroke remain the number one cause of death in the U.S. for both men and women. CVDs affect Delawareans at a rate significantly above the national average. CVDs are largely preventable, and related to risk factors prevalent in the state and region such as poor diet, obesity, physical inactivity, and other modifiable behaviors. In addition to these risk factors, increasing age and the presence of other chronic conditions significantly raise the risk for cardiovascular events and death.

Ideal cardiovascular health is defined as the absence of clinically manifest CVD, along with optimal levels of blood pressure, cholesterol, blood glucose, and body weight.1 In addition, ideal cardiovascular health is associated with healthy behaviors such as regular physical activity, lack of smoking, and healthy eating patterns. It is well established that unhealthy cardiovascular behaviors can result in structural and/or functional vascular changes, causing target organ impairment and damage. More mechanistic information is needed to combat CVDs, and novel interventions need to be tested to improve cardiovascular health and overall well being.

The goal of the University of Delaware Center of Biomedical Research Excellence in Cardiovascular Health is to support multidisciplinary research aimed toward understanding the mechanisms underlying the causes and consequences of poor cardiovascular health and/or function, and developing effective interventions for these conditions.

  1. Virani SS, Alonso A, Benjamin EJ, et al. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics-2020 Update: A Report From the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2020;141(9):e139-e596.
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