Apple is working with pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly and health startup Evidation on a dementia study using data captured from iPhone and Apple Watch (via CNBC).
The results of the study will be discussed today at the SIGKDD conference in Alaska. The companies are trying to find a way to detect signs of Alzheimer’s disease with the help of Apple devices. Evidation cofounder Christine Lemke spoke of the initiative:
With this research, we looked at how everyday behavior data, such as those captured by iPhones, Apple Watches, and Beddit sleep monitors, may be effective in differentiating between individuals with mild cognitive impairment and early Alzheimer’s disease, and those without symptoms.
The companies found that people with symptoms of cognitive decline typed more slowly and less regularly, and sent fewer text messages compared to healthy patients. The study took place over 12 weeks with a control group of 82 healthy people and 31 people with various stages of dementia and cognitive decline.
No long-term conclusions were able to be drawn, and more analysis and research is needed.