The Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry has been given £15,000 to research if women develop diabetes because of an ovary condition.
The grant to the Peninsula Foundation, the college's charitable arm, has come from Cornwall's Duchy Health Charity.
The research was to see if women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome were more at risk of developing the pancreatic condition, the foundation said.
The research, in Truro, will look at women in Cornwall.
'Predisposition to diabetes'
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a result of abnormal hormone levels causing tiny cysts developing in the ovaries, meaning eggs may not be released regularly.
Research leader Professor Jonathan Pinkney said it was a very common among young women and often went unrecognised by both women and their doctors.
It tended to come to light if a woman developed irregular or absent periods, or expressed concerns about infertility or excessive hair growth.
Professor Jonathan Pinkney said: "However, another longer term and largely-neglected consequence for women with PCOS appears to be an increased risk of developing diabetes and possibly heart disease.
"The reasons for this are currently unclear.
"In this research, women with PCOS are being compared with healthy women without PCOS in order to understand how the predisposition to diabetes arises."
The study would also try and identify the best ways to reduce the risks of diabetes, he added.