Join a Study

We have several research opportunities for adults age 50 and older. Please fill out an eligibility survey, and we will contact you if one of our studies is a good fit for you. Read on to learn more about the types of studies we offer and what to expect at a study visit. 

Complete a study survey



Benefits of Joining a Research Study

Contribute to knowledge that helps the health and well-being of others, Receive ongoing feedback about your health



Cognitive Health Among African Americans

Historically, many communities have been excluded from or mistreated by research organizations. These injustices have created gaps in the scientific literature for underrepresented groups. This is true in memory research as much as any other disease category. 

Our research program includes a special focus on cognitive health among African Americans. African Americans experience different cognitive health outcomes from other groups, such as:

  • African American older adults are twice as likely as white older adults to have Alzheimer's disease (Alzheimer's Association).
  • Though African Americans make up 13.6% of the U.S. population, African American families bear 33% of the national financial costs associate with Alzheimer's disease (UsAgainstAlzheimers). 
  • By 2060, Alzheimer's disease cases among African American older adults will be four times higher than today (CDC).

The Vanderbilt Memory & Alzheimer's Center affirms the urgent need to end the disproportionate burden of Alzheimer's disease on families of color. Our researchers are committed to making discoveries that benefit our local communities.

To learn more about how your participation can help prevent Alzheimer's disease for future generations, please contact our Community Engagement Manager, Pam Cowley at or (615) 875-3175.


What to Expect When Participating in Research

If you are 50 years of age or older and live in middle Tennessee or willing to travel to Nashville for research visits, then you may be eligible to join one of our research studies. Please consider joining our registry to be contacted about future opportunities. 


Join Participant Registry

Vanderbilt Memory & Aging Project (VMAP)

Founded in 2012, VMAP is a longitudinal study tracking the impact of vascular health on brain health and Alzheimer's disease risk over time. VMAP is actively recruiting new participants who are 50 years of age or older.

Once enrolled, VMAP participants complete study activities over a three-day period every 18 months to 2 years. These follow-up visits provide important information about changes over time. Study activities include a physical examination, cognitive testing, a brain MRI, a heart MRI, a lumbar puncture, and other health monitoring activities. 

Clinical Trials

For individuals who have been diagnosed by a doctor with mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer's disease, the Vanderbilt Memory & Alzheimer's Center offers clinical trials. We encourage you to join our Participant Registry so our staff can alert you as new clinical trials open for patient enrollment. 

Participate in a study


Vanderbilt Memory and Alzheimer’s Center
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

1207 17th Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37212


Support Our Research

Make a Gift

Participate in a Study

Sign Up for the VMAC Newsletter

Follow Us:

Twitter​  Instagram​  Facebook


Vanderbilt Memory and Alzheimer's Center

About Us


Our Research

Patient & Family Resources