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Understanding the link between ethnic groups and chronic disease

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New research at Curtin University of Technology will investigate the relationship between ethnicity and health risk factors that can lead to chronic disease such as, heart disease and diabetes.

Lead researcher, Dr Majid Meshkini, a PhD student from Curtin’s Centre for International Health, said the research would shed light on the different risk factors among four prominent ethnic groups in Australia.

“We will be looking specifically at migrants of European, Chinese, Indian, and Iranian ethnicity and measuring indicators like height, weight, waist circumference, and other criteria like blood pressure and blood fat,” he said.

“These indicators can influence the development of chronic disease risk factors such as obesity and insulin resistance.

“By understanding how genetics and ethnicity are related to the prevalence of these risk factors, we hope to be able to better prevent the development of chronic disease in the Australian population.

“To date there have been very limited studies in Australia that have investigated the effect of ethnicity on these risk factors and chronic disease.” 

The study is seeking volunteers aged more than 18 with parents from Europe, China, India or Iran.

Volunteers must have lived in Australia for at least five years, have a working knowledge of spoken and written English, and fulfil one or more of the following criteria:

  • Overweight with a body mass index of 25 or more
  • Waist circumference of 90cm (or more) for males or 80cm (or more) for females
  • Blood pressure of 130/86 or higher and/or taking medication for this condition
  • Diabetes

Pregnant women or those who are breast feeding will not be included in this study.

To volunteer contact Dr Majid Meshkini on 08 9266 1382 or email

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