Google's Study Kit to advance Baseline Study health research project

Google is expanding its research efforts into human disease and illness to better understand how the human body goes from healthy to sick, and is testing apps for gathering needed data, according to a TechCrunch report.

The company kicked off its health-focused research effort, called Baseline Study, about a year ago in a pilot involving Stanford University and Duke University focusing on defining the status of healthy. The second project stage, scheduled to begin later this year, will involve a "Study Kit," which will feature software tools for both iOS and Android and include a Chrome extension, TechCruch reports.

"An app is one route we're considering and some of our pilot participants are testing this early version," a Google spokesperson tells TechCrunch. The data to be collected will go beyond the aspects of weight and heart rate monitoring and may delve into DNA sequencing insight.

"It may sound counter-intuitive, but by studying health, we might someday be better able to understand disease," Andrew Conrad of Google[x] and Baseline Study leader says in the article.

The next step in the project comes on the heels of Google attaining a patent for a smart contact lens featuring a chip, electric circuit and sensor technology, as well as news of a patent effort relating to a wrist device aimed at killing cancer cells. In addition, a recent research letter published in the journal JAMA Dermatology reveals Google's Glass wearable is a feasible mHealth tool for dermatology diagnosis in the emergency room setting.

The Google Baseline Study was initiated with 175 volunteers and is expected to include thousands of participants as it moves forward. 

For more information:
- read the TechCrunch report

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