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Anders Tånger
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Mobile games with AI functions will get young people to take their medication

Published: 20 May 2021

Researchers at Luleå University of Technology will, together with the company Mindforce Game Lab, look at the extent to which machine learning can help identify a person's mood and inspire them to take better care of themselves. By developing interactive AI solutions, they hope to help people suffering from mental illness take their medication and keep track of their progress.

Help to follow the treatment plan
The number of people suffering from mental illness has increased in recent years, but the available medical infrastructure does not meet demand. This was one of the reasons why the Skellefteå-based company Mindforce Game Lab began to develop an interactive mobile game that helps people change their behavior and achieve better health. The game, which is registered as a medical device, is aimed primarily at young people suffering from depression and bipolar disorder. The goal is for the user, with the support of a game and a game character, to increase the compliance of their treatment and establish healthy habits around food, sleep and exercise.

Anders Tånger, CEO of Mindforce Game Lab says:
-In case of mental illness, it is important to follow the treatment plan and take prescribed medication. However, for various reasons, many patients do not take their prescribed medication. If you look at chronic diseases, both simpler and more serious diagnoses, the average is to complete your medication at about 50 percent. According to the WHO, the problem of people not taking their medication as they should, is more important to deal with than new breakthroughs for various medications.

Analyze behavior patterns
The game, called "Fig, a 'playtient' journey", uses a so-called "Tamagotchi effect" to create an emotional connection to the main character named "Fig" in the game. The assumption is based on the fact that caring for the character should inspire the user to take better care of himself and that the main character in the game takes medication regularly and encourages the user to do the same. Using Artificial Intelligence, researchers will analyze the user's behavioral patterns and, using machine learning techniques, identify triggers, examine whether the person is improving or deteriorating, and allow the app to respond accordingly.

The work is part of an AI project
The work takes place within the framework of the project Applied AI DIH North at Luleå University of Technology. The project aims to create a strong innovation system for growth in the AI industry. It runs for three years and is financed by the EU's regional development fund (Tillväxtverket), Luleå University of Technology, Luleå municipality, Skellefteå municipality and the Norrbotten Region.
More information about the project can be found here:

Mindforce Game Lab is looking for test subjects. Interested? Visit: