Navigation Links
Shuttle Atlantis to launch with yeast

TORONTO, ON When NASA's final space shuttle mission launches today it will carry four astronauts and some unusual passengers yeast cell growth experiments developed by Canadian researchers at the University of Toronto's Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research.

The Micro-4 project will study simple yeast cells to better understand human disease. The genetic makeup of a yeast cell is remarkably similar to that of a human cell, which makes it an ideal system for studying genetic defects and understanding how these defects may manifest in human disease. In two separate experiments conducted at the International Space Station researchers will study the effect of microgravity on cell growth, and how different mutant genes might affect susceptibility to a microgravity situation.

"The results of these experiments may provide critical insight into which set of human genes are important and how these genes work together to help humans deal with extreme environments associated with space travel," says Brenda Andrews, researcher and director of the Terrence Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research "This information could inform future planned missions to Mars as well as longer-term settlement of moon and Mars-based colonies."

In the first experiment, yeast cells will be grown in petri dishes and kept in temperature-controlled chambers. To prevent cell growth, the chambers will be kept at 4o C until the shuttle has reached the space station. Once on the station, chamber temperature will be increased to 30o C, an optimal temperature for yeast cell growth. The cells will be allowed to grow for 48 hours after which they will be cooled back down and returned to Toronto for analysis. In the second experiment, 6000 different yeast cells, each identified by a special 'bar-code,' will be grown in liquid broth and the crew will transfer the yeast cells to fresh liquid broth twice during the course of the mission. These experiments will allow the Toronto team to see how the space environment and the genetic background of the cell combine to impact cell growth and survival.

"Little is currently known about the effects of long-term zero gravity on biological systems. Through these experiments, we expect to get a huge amount of new information about how genetic background affects survival in low-gravity/low- radiation environments, issues that are relevant to people exposed to these environments," says Professor Corey Nislow, researcher and principal investigator at the Donnelly Centre for Biomedical Research.

The Micro-4 project is led by U of T professors Corey Nislow, Guri Giaever, Charles Boone and Brenda Andrews from the Donnelly Centre for Biomedical Research. The project is coordinated by Michael Costanzo, Project Leader in the Donnelly Centre and is supported by Ames and BioServe Space Technologies. Timothy Hammond of the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, N.C., is the principal investigator.

The space shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to lift off today at approximately 11:36 a.m. from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.


Contact: Joyann Callender
University of Toronto

Related biology news :

1. Final space shuttle to carry 5 CU-Boulder-built payloads
2. CU-Boulder and NASAs space shuttle program: Triumphs and tragedies
3. Bone loss prevention experiment on the last space shuttle flight
4. Engineer to launch bacteria into space aboard the final mission of Space Shuttle Atlantis
5. Final flight of space shuttle Discovery to carry 2 payloads built by CU-Boulder
6. Swan song of space shuttle Discovery to carry 2 payloads built by CU-Boulder
7. 3 payloads built by CU-Boulder set for launch on space shuttle Atlantis
8. Rensselaer researchers to send bacteria into orbit aboard space shuttle Atlantis
9. SIB launches next generation ExPASy, an entry portal to indispensable bioinformatics resources
10. Life Sciences Discovery Fund helps launch 3 programs to advance health research and development
11. Elsevier launches International Journal for Parasitology: Drugs and Drug Resistance
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/18/2015)... --> --> ... report titled  Gesture Recognition Market - Global Industry Analysis, ... to the report, the global gesture recognition market was valued at ... US$29.1 bn by 2021, at a CAGR of 20.3% ... dominated the global gesture recognition market in ...
(Date:11/16/2015)... Nov 16, 2015  Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: ... solutions, today announced expansion of its TDDI product ... touch controller and display driver integration (TDDI) solutions ... These new TDDI products add to the previously-announced ... TD4302 (WQHD resolution), and TD4322 (FHD resolution) solutions. ...
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015  In this ... the basis of product, type, application, disease ... in this report are consumables, services, software. ... are safety biomarkers, efficacy biomarkers, and validation ... report are diagnostics development, drug discovery and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... Calif. , Nov. 24, 2015 Cepheid ... will be speaking at the following conference, and invited ... New York, NY      Tuesday, December 1, 2015 ... New York, NY      Tuesday, December 1, 2015 ... Jaffray Healthcare Conference, New York, NY ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - Aeterna Zentaris ... of IIROC on behalf of the Toronto Stock Exchange, ... release there are no corporate developments that would cause ... --> --> About Aeterna ... . --> Aeterna Zentaris is a ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... LEXINGTON, Massachusetts , November 24, 2015 ... Officer, will participate in the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual ... on Tuesday, December 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 p.m. ... Poulton , Chief Financial Officer, will participate in the Piper Jaffray ... City , NY on Tuesday, December 1, 2015, at 8:30 ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... In harsh industrial processes, ... for in-line sensors can represent a weak spot where leaking process media is ... retractable sensor housings , which are designed to tolerate extreme process conditions. They ...
Breaking Biology Technology: