The participants of the Dortmund Vital Study represent a population sample of a western society aged between 20 and 70 years. To enhance the representativity of the sample we include individuals who are smokers, drink alcohol, are overweight, or have a history of diseases without having severe symptoms. Moreover, we do not impose restrictions regarding education or occupation, but employed people are preferentially invited. Participants are recruited via an internet site, newspaper advertisements, reports and announcements in local print and radio media, public information events, social media, and flyers throughout the city of Dortmund, Germany.

The study is longitudinal for 20 years, and participants will be invited for follow-up examinations every five years. A group size of approximately 600 was targeted for the baseline examination. Assuming a dropout rate of up to 20% per follow-up, we expect approximately 300 remaining participants aged between 35 and 85 years for the final, as summarized in the Table.

Age at T1
Age at T2
Age at T3
Age at T4
20 years
70 years
25 years
75 years
30 years
80 years
35 years
85 years
n 600 480 384 307

Current State

Current number of tested persons in Phase 1 (January 2024): n = 623 ()
Current number of tested persons in Phase 2 (January 2024): n = 152 ()