An Alzheimer’s diagnosis often relies on signs of memory problems. However, these issues usually do not appear until years after the disease has taken hold
Islamabad (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News / Online – May, 2019) An Alzheimer’s diagnosis often relies on signs of memory problems. However, these issues usually do not appear until years after the disease has taken hold.
A new smartphone game is using spatial navigation to detect Alzheimer’s before it is too late.Another person develops Alzheimer’s disease every 3 seconds, according to Alzheimer’s Disease International.
The number of people living with this most common form of dementia currently stands at around 50 million. By 2050, experts expect this figure to have tripled.Navigating spaceA collaboration between the organization, the University of East Anglia (UEA) and University College London in the U.K., and Deutsche Telekom has resulted in a game that may help experts detect who is at risk of Alzheimer’s.”We often hear heartbreaking stories about people with dementia who get lost and can’t find their way home,” continues Evans, adding that spatial navigation issues “are some of the earliest warning signs for the condition.
“Such problems are the focus of the Sea Hero Quest game, which encourages players to find their way around various mazes.
So far, more than 4.3 million people across the globe have tried it.A game changerGenetic testing revealed that 31 of the participants in the smaller group had the APOE4 gene. Carriers of this gene are almost three times more likely than other people to develop Alzheimer’s disease, and it tends to appear when they are younger.When the team compared the lab group data with the benchmark data, they could distinguish between those with and without the APOE4 gene based on the way that they played Sea Hero Quest.Those with a genetic predisposition to Alzheimer’s “took less efficient routes to checkpoint goals” and “performed worse on spatial navigation tasks,” notes Prof.