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Project Title:  Effects of Acute and Protracted Galactic Cosmic Radiation on Bone Strength Reduce
Images: icon  Fiscal Year: FY 2021 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP SR:Space Radiation
Start Date: 06/30/2021  
End Date: 06/29/2022  
Task Last Updated: 09/09/2021 
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Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Lau, Anthony G Ph.D. / College of New Jersey 
Address:  Department of Biomedical Engineering 
2000 Pennington Rd, P.O. Box 7718 
Ewing , NJ 08618-1104 
Phone: 609-771-2644  
Congressional District: 12 
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: College of New Jersey 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: As of Fall 2015, Dr. Lau is at The College of New Jersey. Previously at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill while NSBRI postdoc. 
Davis, Catherine  Ph.D. Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. 80NSSC21K1506 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor: Elgart, Robin  
Center Contact: 281-244-0596 (o)/832-221-4576 (m) 
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2020 HERO 80JSC019N0001-HFBP, OMNIBUS3 Crew Health: Human Factors and Behavioral Performance-Appendix E; Omnibus3-Appendix F 
Grant/Contract No.: 80NSSC21K1506 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:  
No. of PhD Candidates:  
No. of Master's Candidates:  
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:  
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No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) SR:Space Radiation
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Bmed:Risk of Adverse Behavioral Conditions and Psychiatric Disorders
(2) Bone Fracture:Risk of Bone Fracture due to Spaceflight-induced Changes to Bone (IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) BMed-102:Given exposures to spaceflight hazards (space radiation, isolation), how do we identify individual susceptibility, monitor molecular/biomarkers and acceptable thresholds, and validate behavioral health and CNS/neurological/neuropsychological performance measures and domains of relevance to exploration class missions? (IRP Rev L)
(2) BMed-103:What are the validated, efficacious treatments (individual or Team-based) and/or countermeasures to prevent adverse behavioral conditions, CNS/neurological, and/or psychiatric disorders caused by either single and/or integrated exposures to spaceflight hazards during exploration class missions? (IRP Rev L)
(3) Osteo04:We do not know the contribution of each risk factor on bone loss and recovery of bone strength, and which factors are the best targets for countermeasure application (IRP Rev E)
Task Description: The exposure to ionizing space radiation can lead to damage of multiple biological tissue systems. The proposed work investigates degeneration of the central nervous system (CNS) and bone tissues from exposure to different does of simulated space radiation. Radiation is known to affect biological pathways that regulate both the CNS and bone. The objective of the proposed work to is to investigate the relationship between declines in cognitive function and declines from exposure to simulated space radiation, as well as to quantify these changes. The objectives will be addressed through animal studies exposing rats to acute and protracted (or fractionated) simulated galactic cosmic radiation and investigating the relationship between neurobehavioral deficits and bone degradation 7, 30, 90, and 180 days after radiation exposure.

This tissue sharing proposal is part of an on-going collaboration between Dr. Catherine Davis at Uniformed Services University, who is currently funded by NASA to investigate the cognitive degradation in rats exposed to space radiation. Our lab has been collecting the hind limbs from her studies to investigate the corresponding bone strength changes in these rats. Neurobehavioral assessments include odor recognition memory tests and sustained attention tests. A multi-length scale approach will be performed to assess the corresponding bone health changes. Bone health assessments include microstructural (microCT scans), material property (micro-indentation), and whole bone (3-point bending) evaluations of bone strength. Analysis will be performed on CNS and bone endpoint measurements to determine whether the neurobehavioral deficits are predictive of declines in bone strength. The work is significant to NASA’s goal for astronaut health during long duration spaceflight. Establishing a relationship between the CNS and bone response to radiation can provide valuable information for potential mechanisms and countermeasure targets for both systems.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits:

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2021 
Task Progress: New project for FY2021.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 03/30/2016) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 None in FY 2021