UC San Francisco, Samsung partner on blood pressure app for research

UC San Francisco and Samsung Electronics will launch a smartphone app, dubbed My BP Lab, on the Google Play Store March 15 to fuel a research project on blood pressure and stress.

Samsung's Galaxy S9 and S9+ users who download the My BP Lab app will have the option to join a three-week research study conducted by UCSF researchers. The app leverages an optical sensor on the S9 and S9+ phones to measure users' blood pressure and stress levels throughout the day.

During the study period, participants will also input their behaviors — such as sleep, exercise and diet — into the app to track how emotions and activities they experience throughout the day influence their well-being.

The researchers' goal for the study is to improve the accuracy of Samsung's blood pressure readings, while also providing users with personalized insights into how to manage their daily health, according to a Feb. 25 statement from UCSF.

"This study could provide the largest dataset yet on stress, daily emotional experiences and blood pressure," said Wendy Berry Mendes, PhD, a professor of psychiatry at UCSF and the director of the San Francisco-based Emotion, Health and Psychophysiology Lab. "Our partnership with Samsung could help people all over the world improve their health by managing stress."

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