Google Life Sciences has teamed up with the American Heart Association (AHA) to fight heart disease. Both organizations will contribute $25 million over the next five years as part of the commitment to search for a cure.
Heart disease a matter of serious concern
AHA chief executive Nancy Brown said cardiovascular disease has a devastating human impact on countless generations of families, and the greatest and deadliest global health challenge that humans face today is coronary heart disease in particular.
“By working together, AHA and Google Life Sciences will be able to serve as the catalyst for change and transformation in reducing the impact of coronary heart disease on people’s lives and alleviating this global burden,” Brown said.
The number one cause of death globally is cardiovascular disease, leading to 17 million deaths on an annual basis due to heart ailments, the AHA said. And coronary heart disease accounts for 7 million deaths each year. The root cause of these life-threatening diseases has continued to confound researchers and health professionals.
A research team has been allotted the task of developing a richer and deeper understanding of cardiovascular disease. The team will receive the $50 million investment from the two organizations for the task. This is the single largest research investment in the history of the AHA, which will be responsible for designing a program to discover causes and drivers of coronary heart disease.
Google focusing on finding a cure for several diseases
Heart disease is Google Life Sciences’ latest foray into medicine. In the past, the company made an attempt at developing new ways to treat and manage diabetes, but now it is focusing on a variety of other diseases such as cancer and neurodegenerative conditions.
Following massive organizational changes earlier this year, Google Life Sciences was spun out from Google. It used to be a Google X division and worked on moonshot projects designed around improving the quality of life. Some of its projects include contact lenses to monitor glucose levels, a spoon for monitoring tremors, a disease-detecting nano-particle platform and a health-tracking wristband.
On Friday, Alphabet (parent company for Google) shares closed up 0.12% at $761.60. Year to date, the stock is up by almost 44% while in the last one month, it is up by almost 16%.