A year in space can be enough time to suffer permanent changes in your DNA. This has been proven by NASA, which as part of an experiment called Twin Studyhas had Scott Kelly almost a year on the International Space Station. On their return they have contrasted that their DNA is no longer exactly the same.(astronaut DNA changed)
After spending a total of 340 days in space, astronaut Scott Kelly returned to Earth in March 2016 and melted into a hug with his twin brother Mark. Scott ended with this embrace a space mission, integrated into the study known as ‘The Twins Study’, which aimed to discover what happens to the human body after a year floating in microgravity.(astronaut DNA changed)
Since both brothers were identical, they were the two best subjects for NASA to compare the evolutions suffered by the one against the other. All this to determine if the effects suffered by the spatial stay could mean a risk to health.
To verify that the modification is effective and at what level it has occurred, Scott’s brother, also an astronaut, has remained on Earth as a control group. The surprise is not that there are changes in DNA, something usual and expected, but that they seem to be permanent and irreversible.(astronaut DNA changed)
According to the first DNA analyzes, Scott increased the length of its telomeres (the ends of the chromosomes) and decreased the levels of DNA methylation. On the other hand, the first study also found that Scott grew up to five centimeters during his space adventure, all due to microgravity, which stretches the spine. Now, new analyzes reveal that Scott’s genes have undergone variations from his brother’s.
As explained by NASA, about 7% of Scott’s genes have undergone a permanent modification during the 340 days that Kelly has spent on the International Space Station (ISS). Specifically, the astronaut has seen modified genes associated with bone formation, the absence of oxygen and the immune system. Genes that, after a year in space, are completely different from those of their twin brother, born with identical DNA.(astronaut DNA changed)
Throughout this year, NASA will offer the final results of this research, which looks askance at the new space stage .. which aims to colonize Mars. How about? Is it “good” for humans to spend time in space?