Michael Berberoglu, Masaru Nakamoto
Arts and Sciences
It is currently unknown whether humans can survive and thrive in outer space, which includes human embryonic development. In this study we investigate vertebrate embryonic development under conditions present in outer space including microgravity and an altered day-and-night cycle using zebrafish and chicken model systems. Zebrafish and chicken model systems are widely used in developmental biology research given their similarity as vertebrates to humans. We aim to analyze the development of brain, muscle and other tissues under conditions of microgravity in both zebrafish and chicken embryos. Additionally, we will analyze zebrafish development under an altered day-and-night cycle (16 sunrises and 16 sunsets per day), and determine whether adult zebrafish can survive and reproduce under these conditions. Zebrafish and chicken embryos will be placed onto a clinostat, which is a device used to simulate a microgravity environment. Embryos will be harvested between 2 and 14 days of incubation on the clinostat, and markers of cell proliferation, death, and differentiation will be analyzed on tissue sections of the brain, skeletal muscle, and other tissues. We expect that our results may allow us to better understand embryonic development under conditions present in outer space, which may shed light on this process in humans.
Benson, Blake; Berberoglu, Michael A.; Baker, Elaina; Nakamoto, Masaru; and Yehyawi, Dalia, "Understanding vertebrate embryonic development under conditions present in outer space" (2020). Summer Interdisciplinary Research Symposium. 84.