British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline recently announced the launch of a new clinical study, Patient Rheumatoid Arthritis Data from the Real World (PARADE), which will gather medical data and patient feedback using an iOS app powered by Apple's ResearchKit. Notably, GSK is the first major pharmaceutical company to implement ResearchKit into its research, which it hopes assists in lessening "the burden of patients in clinical studies by reducing the frequency of doctor visits."
The company noted that while it's "not testing a medicine right now," ResearchKit is helping put it on the path of a medicinal development process -- centered mainly around rheumatoid arthritis -- thanks to the insight and health goals of each patient that Apple's research framework provides. Through surveys and the sensors on an iPhone, the GSK PARADE app gathers info on symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, including joint pain, fatigue, and mood.
"Our goal is to engage with patients in a new way that integrates the research into their daily lives versus the traditional model that requires patients to travel to their doctors’ offices," said Rob DiCicco, Vice President of Clinical Innovation at GSK. "By making research as easy and accessible as possible for patients, we have the potential to disrupt the model for how we conduct research in the future and ultimately improve patient health."
The current goal is to track the activity and "quality of life measures" of 300 patients over a 3-month period using GSK's app. On the patient side of things, users will be able to access a dashboard which shows their own personal recordings and data from the study that they can easily share with their own healthcare providers to further investigate into more effective treatment and recovery plans.