Apple's ResearchKit allows researchers to develop their own apps that iPhone users can download in order to participate in a study.
Courtesy of Apple
By Laura Lorenzetti
March 13, 2015

Apple (AAPL) launched ResearchKit earlier this week, and the medical world has been buzzing ever since.

ResearchKit is an open source software framework that’s specially designed for medical and health research using the iPhone’s technically-advanced features, such as its accelerometer, microphone, gyroscope and GPS sensors.

The framework reveal was just the beginning. The real fun is in the apps, five of which were announced in parallel with the ResearchKit debut. The five apps each focus on a different health issue and have the potential to transform research into those areas by allowing researchers access to a diverse pool of participants across the U.S. and the globe. Medical research institutions won’t be restricted to the patients that only live within a certain radius of a lab’s headquarters.

The iPhone’s technology also gives researchers complex data that can be used to understand anything from a patient’s gait to how well he or she retains information. It also allows for a clear and interactive informed consent procedure, meeting scientific standards and allowing users’ more control over how they want to share their information. It adds an extra layer of privacy that didn’t exist before, helping to better protect sensitive medical data.

Curious about participating in one of these studies? It’s as easy as downloading an app. Here are the five disease states and the corresponding apps that are available with the click of an iPhone.


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