Coulter BME Seminar Series
This event is also offered virtually. Please click here to join via Zoom.
“Spaceflight and Space Biology”
Sharmila Bhattacharya, Ph.D.
Program Scientists for Space Biology
Biological and Physical Sciences Division
Space biology investigations help elucidate the effects of spaceflight on biological systems. Spaceflight exposes living organisms to environmental stressors that are not generally experienced on Earth. For instance, a stay on the International Space Station or a journey to the Moon or Mars results in a microgravity environment for an organism, while a stay on the Moon imposes a gravitational force that is one-sixth that of Earth’s gravity. Altered gravity environments are known to affect the physiology, behavior, and molecular responses of biological systems. In addition, the levels of ionizing radiation are significantly elevated in the spaceflight environment, and long-duration human spaceflight missions necessitate research on the biological consequences of exposure to radiation, especially in conjunction with altered gravity and other environmental stressors.
Dr. Bhattacharya will discuss the use of model organisms to elucidate the molecular, physiological, and behavioral changes experienced by biological systems during exposure to spaceflight and in ground-based analogs of spaceflight.