About the MACH15 Trial

Welcome to the website of the Moderate Alcohol and Cardiovascular Health (MACH15), a worldwide clinical study.
It is designed to determine whether drinking one alcoholic beverage per day will decrease the chance of developing heart disease.

The study

  • 7,800 people will be randomly (like the flip of a coin) assigned to 1 of 2 groups: 1 drink per day or no alcohol for about 6 years.
  • Up to 16 sites around the world - Map & info of partners (see Secure example)
  • The study is being sponsored by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the United States' National Institutes of Health.
  • Overall investigator: Dr. Kenneth Mukamal at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts.


  • We are currently screening people to see if they are eligible for the study, and will be enrolling people for the next 3 years.
  • Participation in the study lasts about 6 years.


Participating may or may not benefit you directly. We hope the information learned from this study will benefit other people in the future.

Who can join? You might be eligible if:

  • You are 50 years of age or older
  • You are risk for heart disease (Don't know? The local clinical site can help determine this)
  • You are willing to not drink for about 6 years OR you are willing to drink an alcoholic beverage every day for about 6 years
  • You have had an alcoholic beverage in the last 5 years
  • Women: You are post-menopausal (at least 12 months without menstruation)
  • You are not currently participating in another intervention study that is also looking at cardiovascular health
  • You, your mother, or sister has not been diagnosed with breast cancer that required surgery for removal of breast tissue or chemotherapy

What will happen during the study?

  • You will either drink one drink per day or not drink (abstain) from drinking any alcohol for about 6 years
  • During the first year of the study, you will visit the research center (or clinic) at 3, 6, and 12 months
  • During the following years of the study, you will visit the research center (or clinic) once per year
  • Throughout the course of the study, you will have a phone call with a study team member every 3 months
  • You will receive electronic communications that require a response throughout the study
  • During your visit at the research center (or clinic), you will receive:
    • Blood pressure measurements
    • Blood tests
  • Throughout the study you will complete questionnaires and let us know about your health

Risks - Please be sure to speak with a study team member if you have questions

  • Alcohol can be addictive and should not be used by people who have, or have had, problems controlling their alcohol intake
  • Alcohol can interfere with the ability to drive or operate dangerous or delicate machinery
  • Alcohol can increase sedative effects for medications that cause drowsiness, including common cough and cold medicines, as well as medications for anxiety or depression
  • Alcohol can raise levels of triglycerides in the blood
  • In people with chronic liver disease, alcohol can cause liver damage
  • Alcohol may cause weight gain

What to bring to your screening visit

  • Contact information
  • Medical history
  • All medications
  • Note that participants may be asked to fast


Your privacy is very important to us. We take many steps to ensure that your information is kept secure throughout the study. The study is overseen locally by a committee to make sure steps to protect your privacy are being followed. The centers that help coordinate the study are also overseen by committees to make sure they are following rules and guidelines to make sure your privacy is protected. When we analyze the study data, it is only in coded format, so information from a study visit does not include any personal information (name, address, etc.).