Apple, Johnson & Johnson Partner on ‘Heartline’ Clinical Heart Study



Johnson & Johnson, in collaboration with tech giant Apple has launched Heartline – a first-of-its-kind virtual study to explore if heart health features on Apple devices can improve health outcomes, including reducing the risk of stroke.

Johnson & Johnson and Apple are offering eligible US adults (65 years and older) the opportunity to join the clinical study by downloading the Heartline Study app on iPhone.

The aim is to assess whether the Heartline Study app on iPhone, and the ECG app and irregular rhythm notification feature on Apple Watch, can reduce the likelihood of stroke and improve health outcomes with earlier detection of atrial fibrillation (AFib) — a common form of irregular heart rhythm.

Heartline is a study that has the potential to fundamentally change our understanding of how digital health tools, like the ECG app and irregular rhythm notification feature on Apple Watch, could lead to earlier detection of AFib,” explained Dr. C. Michael Gibson, Co-Chair of the Heartline Executive Committee and Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and CEO, Baim Institute.

Despite the fact that AFib is a leading cause of stroke, people often do not experience symptoms, making it difficult to diagnose.

More than 33 million people worldwide live with AFib and up to 30 per cent don’t even know they have it until a serious cardiovascular event, such as a stroke, occurs.

Through this important collaboration with Apple, we are pioneering new models that we hope can break down some of the most common barriers to participation in clinical studies,” said Paul Burton, Vice President, Medical Affairs, Internal Medicine, Janssen Scientific Affairs.

Through the app-based approach, the study will enable participants to engage in the study remotely, right from their iPhone and in some cases an Apple Watch, rather than travel to a clinical trial site.

Apple technology is making a meaningful impact on scientific research through the powerful capabilities of iPhone and Apple Watch, all with privacy at the center of the participant experience,” said Myoung Cha, Apple’s Head of Health Strategic Initiatives.


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