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Mon Jan 30, 2017, 08:30 AM

NASAs Twins Study: Preliminary Findings Hint At Unexpected Changes In Gene Expression And Chromosom

Last year, NASA concluded an unprecedented study aimed at examining the effect of the microgravity environment of space. While the final results of the Twins Study — which, as the name suggests, involved the twin astronauts Mark and Scott Kelly — are yet to be announced, the preliminary results are already throwing up some unexpected findings.

According to an article published last week by Nature News, tests carried out before and after Scott’s yearlong sojourn on board the International Space Station (his brother Mark, a retired astronaut, stayed on Earth), have revealed changes in gene expression, DNA methylation — wherein methyl groups are added to DNA molecules — and several other biological markers.

However, it is still not clear which among these changes can be attributed to Scott’s time in orbit, and which were caused due to natural variations.


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