Sci-tech

Astronaut Scott Kelly's DNA didn't change 7% in Space, Live Science Corrects

Astronaut Scott Kelly's DNA didn't change 7% in Space, Live Science Corrects

The space agency said in a statement, 'Mark and Scott Kelly are still identical twins. It was a ground-breaking study comparing what happened to astronaut Scott Kelly, in space, to his identical twin brother, Mark, who remained on Earth. Scott's DNA didn't change; what NASA is referring to is gene expression. Then, Newsweek took things even further with the headline, "NASA Twins Study Confirms Astronaut's DNA Actually Changed in Space".

Some of the genes that seem to have changed permanently involved DNA fix, bone formation and how the cells use oxygen.

"While in space, S. Kelly had changes to expression in the immune system, metabolism, reactions to low oxygen, stress responses, etc".

The Weekly Standard noted that other news sites sensationalized information about NASA's findings after outlets claimed the twins no longer have the same genetic coding.

Some of the changes in gene expression that NASA noted in Scott reverted to normal within hours of returning to Earth, while others remained changed six months later. "We've seen thousands of genes change".

Colorado State University's Susan Bailey, who leads one of the research group, said Kelly's exercise routine and diet most likely caused the chromosomal bungee.

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As we recently detailed, NASA has offered up preliminary findings under its Twins Study, which looks at the impact space travel has on human health.

Scott Kelly's experience was very similar to this: his gene expression changed during spaceflight, and seven percent of his genes are still expressing the way they were in space.

It is known that astronauts' bodies adapt to micro-gravity, but it was generally assumed the effects wore off upon their return to Earth. "Researchers now know that 93% of Scott's genes returned to normal after landing", NASA reported.

Scott Kelly's change proposes longer-term alterations identified with no less than five natural pathways and capacities and this one of a kind report were discharged at the 2018 Investigator's Workshop for NASA's Human Research Program in January.

The Kelly brothers have almost identical genomes, allowing for an unprecedented look at the physical effects of long-term spaceflight. We are at the beginning of our understanding of how space flight affects the molecular level of the human body.

Mason's team also saw changes in the length of Kelly's telomeres, caps at the end of chromosomes that are considered a marker of biological aging. This is important because NASA plans to someday send astronauts on a three-year mission to Mars. Last March, Scott was two inches taller when he returned from his mission than he had been when he left.


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