A new mobile game has been developed to help provide researchers with valuable data about dementia.
Users only need to play the game for around two minutes to provide doctors with enough data to help in the early diagnosis of the disorder.
The news comes in light of research conducted by scientists from University College London and the University of East Anglia in the UK. They created the game in conjunction with Alzheimer’s Research UK and Deutsche Telecom.
The game is called Sea Hero Quest and is a story about father and son who go on adventures to discover sea creatures. The father loses his memory and needs the help of his son to recall them. Of course there is a serious side to the game and these lay in the challenges. One such challenge involves navigating the ship to a predetermined location to understand navigational skills. The game then asks simple questions to see how the responses differ across genders, location and of course age.
The researchers say that reduced navigational skills are often an early symptom of dementia. However, the group admitted that at present they don’t have enough data to establish a standard but are obviously aiming for this. A standard would help them to determine whether reduced navigational skills are a result of natural aging or an early sign of dementia.
The group are hoping 100,000 people play Sea Hero Quest and if they each played the game for 2 minutes it would achieve the same amount of data as what they could in laboratory in 50 years.
The collection of the data will also assist with early diagnosis which, although there is no known cure, would assist with a patient’s treatment.