Traveling in space may lead to lasting effects on the brain, the first long-term study in Russian cosmonauts has warned.…
Traveling in space may lead to lasting effects on the brain, the first long-term study in Russian cosmonauts has warned. Det kan også føre til muskelatrofi og reduktioner i binde-tetthet. Little is known about how different tissues of the brain react to exposure to microgravity, said researcher from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU) in Germany.
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The brain scans of astronauts revealed significant structural changes as a result of these extraordinary events. -terrestrial journeys. Their brain shifted upwards and the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) spaces at the top of the brain were found to be narrowed. Interestingly enough, these significant changes were only found in the brains of the astronauts who endured longer space travel.
“The changes we have seen may explain unusual symptoms experienced by returning space station astronauts and helping identify key issues in the planning of longer -duration space exploration, including missions to Mars, “said Dr. Michael Antonucci, a neuro radiologist at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).
The study, which appears in the New England Journal of Medicine, shows that differential changes in the three main tissue volumes of the brain remain detectable for at least
The research was carried out on cosmonauts, each of which had spent an average of 1
89 days on board the International Space Station (ISS).
The researchers used magnetic resonance tomography (MRT) to image the brains of subjects both before and shortly after the conclusion of their long-term missions.
In addition, seven members of the cohort were re-examined seven months after their return from space. 19659006] “Dette er faktisk den første undersøgelsen, hvor det har været muligt at objektivt kvantificere ændringer i hjernestrukturer efter en rummission, herunder også en forlænget opfølgningsperiode,” siger Peter zu Eulenburg, professor ved LMU. 9659006] The MRT scans performed in the days after the return to Earth revealed that the volume of the gray matter (the part of the cerebral cortex that mainly consisted of the cell bodies of the neurons) was reduced compared to the baseline measurement before launch.
In the follow-up scans done 7 months later, this effect was partially reversed, but nevertheless still detectable.
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In contrast, the volume of the cerebrospinal fluid, which fills the inner and outer cavities of the brain, increased within the cortex during long-term exposure to microgravity.
Moreover, this process was also observable in the outside spaces that cover the brain after the return to Earth, while the cerebrospinal fluid spaces within returned to near normal size.
The white matter tissue volume (those parts of the brain
In this case, the subsequent examination 6 months later showed a widespread reduction in volume relative to both earlier measurements.
In this case, the researchers postulate that over the course of a longer period in space, the volume of the white matter may slowly be replaced by an influx of cerebrospinal fluid.
Upon return to Earth, this process is then gradually reversed, which then results in a relative reduction of white matter volume.
“Taken together, our results point to prolonged changes in the pattern of cerebrospinal fluid circulation over a period of at least seven months following the return to Earth, “said zu Eulenburg.
” However, whether the extensive changes shown in the gray and the white matter lead to any changes in cognition remains unclear at present, “he said. inputs from agencies)