A mobile game did 1,700 years worth of dementia research - in 14 days

That's a lot of time in the lab

Two weeks after launch a mobile game, which has been designed to help with dementia research, has revealed it has contributed the equivalent of 1,770 years of lab-based results.

The results will be a big contribution to our understanding of how the disease affects navigation in the brain.

Sea Hero Quest records how you navigate around the in-game map. Those results are used to find how a healthy brain navigates and can be applied to those with dementia, helping to tackle the disease.

The game has been downloaded over a million times since it launched on May 4 and over 100,000 people played the game on day one.

Fantastic results

A spokesperson for Sea Hero Quest said, "Over the coming months, scientists will analyse the data collected through game play.

"They will look at how people of different ages, gender and nationality navigate in order to try and establish a global benchmark for human spatial navigation, something which would have previously taken hundreds of years to survey using lab-based research methods."

How effective this research is remains to be seen. It's going to take the team some time to dive into the information the game has collected.

Still, this is the first time we have seen a project of this size aim to collect results from a mobile game, and any attempt to help solve dementia is a step in the right direction.