NASA's Study of Astronaut Twins Creates a Portrait of What a Year in Space Does to the Human Body - Deepstash
Hiring Without an Office

Learn more about technologyandthefuture with this collection

How to build trust in a virtual environment

How to manage remote teams effectively

How to assess candidates remotely

Hiring Without an Office

Discover 44 similar ideas in

It takes just

15 mins to read

NASA's Study on long term space missions

NASA's Study on long term space missions

NASA conducted a study to assess the biological effects that long term space exploration can have on humans. 

The study was done on a pair of twin astronauts, one on earth as a control and the other after a 1 year long space mission.

3

92 reads

Introduction

To study the influence of microgravity, radiation and confinement in long-duration spaceflight, NASA selected twins Scott and Mark Kelly for a unique mission. Scott went to space while Mark was chosen as the control to stay on earth for comparison.

The one year long space mission spanned across March 27, 2015 till March 1, 2016.

Although, biological changes were seen across varying aspects, most of them reverted back to preflight state after a few months.

4

43 reads

The Question of Aging.

The Question of Aging.

Telomeres, are the “caps” that protect the ends of DNA strands.

On Earth, these telomeres get depleted over the course of a person’s lifetime as each round of DNA replication wears away at them.

However, in space, the findings were contradictory to what the scientists were expecting. They assumed that due to the immense stress on the body, these telomeres would shorten. But, on the contrary, they had increased in length considerably.

But, a critically large amount of telomeres were lost during the body's return back to normal on earth, which is a cause for concern.

3

44 reads

Gene expression in space

Gene expression in space

Under stressful situations, normally, there is a change in genetic expression.

Accordingly there were changes, but, the unexpected finding was that, these changes in gene expressions, seemed to have accelerated(6 times more) during the latter 6 months of the mission.

This is concerning, because for extended space missions, this could imply that genetic expression could alter exponentially leading to severe consequences. 

Upon returning, about 90% of these altered genetic expressions returned back to preflight states.

3

31 reads

Mental state

Mental state

A decline in cognitive efficiency was reported.

NASA had prepared a set of questions to assess various mental state and cognition.

Upon return, even though Scott’s in-flight measures were stable, his “cognitive efficiency,” or his speed and accuracy in completing the test battery, dropped once he got back to Earth.

The decrease lingered over the six months after his return, till it reverted back.

This is a complication due to the obvious complexity of a space mission, which would require a pretty good cognitive state.

4

27 reads

The space explorer's body

The space explorer's body

His gut microbiome showed altered bacterial proportions, although the overall bacterial diversity was intact.

Several proteins also changed during the spaceflight.

  • Elevated levels of collagen, a structural protein was seen in his urine. Looking at this measure along with physiological changes—like those observed in Scott’s eyeballs and vascular system—could be a sign that the body was restructuring.
  • Researchers also observed heightened levels of aquaporin 2, a protein that tends to be a marker of dehydration.

3

26 reads

Conclusion

This study was in no way conclusive or predictive, because of the very small sample size(just one pair of twins), a short study period, just to name a couple of reasons.

However, it has given an idea of potential changes to be expected and a foundation for upcoming research in the field of prolonged deep space exploration.

3

31 reads

CURATED BY

joelm_saju

A medical student who is interested in the comings and goings of the universe.

CURATOR'S NOTE

Deep space exploration is something which scientists have been aiming for, for a long time. However, among many other technical limitations and complications, biological limitations are also a factor.

Ready for the next level?

Read Like a Pro

stash-superman-illustration

Explore the World’s

Best Ideas

200,000+ ideas on pretty much any topic. Created by the smartest people around & well-organized so you can explore at will.

An Idea for Everything

Explore the biggest library of insights. And we've infused it with powerful filtering tools so you can easily find what you need.

Knowledge Library

Powerful Saving & Organizational Tools

Save ideas for later reading, for personalized stashes, or for remembering it later.

# Personal Growth

Take Your Ideas

Anywhere

Organize your ideas & listen on the go. And with Pro, there are no limits.

Listen on the go

Just press play and we take care of the words.

Never worry about spotty connections

No Internet access? No problem. Within the mobile app, all your ideas are available, even when offline.

Get Organized with Stashes

Ideas for your next work project? Quotes that inspire you? Put them in the right place so you never lose them.

Join

2 Million Stashers

4.8

5,740 Reviews

App Store

4.7

72,690 Reviews

Google Play

Ashley Anthony

This app is LOADED with RELEVANT, HELPFUL, AND EDUCATIONAL material. It is creatively intellectual, yet minimal enough to not overstimulate and create a learning block. I am exceptionally impressed with this app!

samz905

Don’t look further if you love learning new things. A refreshing concept that provides quick ideas for busy thought leaders.

Sean Green

Great interesting short snippets of informative articles. Highly recommended to anyone who loves information and lacks patience.

Shankul Varada

Best app ever! You heard it right. This app has helped me get back on my quest to get things done while equipping myself with knowledge everyday.

Laetitia Berton

I have only been using it for a few days now, but I have found answers to questions I had never consciously formulated, or to problems I face everyday at work or at home. I wish I had found this earlier, highly recommended!

Ghazala Begum

Even five minutes a day will improve your thinking. I've come across new ideas and learnt to improve existing ways to become more motivated, confident and happier.

Giovanna Scalzone

Brilliant. It feels fresh and encouraging. So many interesting pieces of information that are just enough to absorb and apply. So happy I found this.

Jamyson Haug

Great for quick bits of information and interesting ideas around whatever topics you are interested in. Visually, it looks great as well.

Read & Learn

20x Faster

without
deepstash

with
deepstash

with

deepstash

Access to 200,000+ ideas

Access to the mobile app

Unlimited idea saving & library

Unlimited history

Unlimited listening to ideas

Downloading & offline access

Personalized recommendations

FAQ

Claim Your Limited Offer

Get Deepstash Pro

Supercharge your mind with one idea per day

Enter your email and spend 1 minute every day to learn something new.

Email

I agree to receive email updates