MAR 23, 2015 6:01 AM PDT

Twins to be Studied In Space and on Earth

The astronaut Scott Kelly is about to take off for the International Space Station, and if he is like some space travelers, he may temporarily feel a bit foggy or disoriented once in orbit.
Scientists have not had much luck measuring this subtle effect with standard cognitive tests, but now, a group of University of Pennsylvania researchers is trying a new tack.

While Kelly is in space, they will compare his mental performance with that of a uniquely qualified individual who stays behind on Earth. An individual whose brain is about as similar to Kelly's as you can imagine: his identical twin, Mark.

The Penn study of the twins, who grew up in West Orange, N.J., is one of 10 that NASA has approved for the one-year mission, which could launch as early as Friday.
Scientists from other institutions are tackling such topics as space-induced changes in Kelly's immune system, intestinal bacteria, and genetic expression. All of it will be compared with test results from his brother, a retired astronaut.

The goal is to get a better idea of what happens to the human body on a prolonged mission, in preparation for an eventual journey to Mars.


(Source: Philly.com)
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
MAR 15, 2020
Space & Astronomy
ExoMars Rover Launch Delayed Until 2022
MAR 15, 2020
ExoMars Rover Launch Delayed Until 2022
2020 was expected to play host to a plethora of Martian missions, including the United States’ Mars 2020 rover, wh ...
MAR 29, 2020
Space & Astronomy
United States Space Force Launches First Mission
MAR 29, 2020
United States Space Force Launches First Mission
Despite all the measures that are currently in place to keep as much of the general public away from public places as po ...
MAR 31, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Can Viruses Survive in Outer Space?
MAR 31, 2020
Can Viruses Survive in Outer Space?
Outer space is often depicted as a harsh environment. It’s effectively an airless vacuum, and anything residing th ...
APR 07, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Here's The Reason Why Space is Black
APR 07, 2020
Here's The Reason Why Space is Black
Anyone who can tilt their head up enough to glance at the night sky would be able to tell you that outer space looks bla ...
MAY 10, 2020
Space & Astronomy
What Exactly Are Star Clusters?
MAY 10, 2020
What Exactly Are Star Clusters?
When you think of stellar systems, you might be inclined to think of a system like our own with just one star, or perhap ...
JUL 31, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Light from the Big Bang Reveals Age of the Universe
JUL 31, 2020
Light from the Big Bang Reveals Age of the Universe
From analyzing ancient light emitted by the Big Bang, physicists have been able to provide a new estimate of the Earth&# ...
Loading Comments...