Let's do an experiment. If your body and your health permit, I suggest the following.
Breathe deeply, place your legs at shoulder height, bend your knees, and try to get away from the surface as much as possible. Even if you try again and again, there is an incredibly powerful force that will make you return to earth: it's called force of gravity. The whole life of our planet had to adapt to it.
How is it? Since this invisible force has always existed, all species, including ours, have evolved to coexist with it. According to this logic, it is easy to understand our vital activities (such as digestion or blood circulation, just to give some examples) They need gravity to develop ideally.
An unusual experiment
Now, if our bodies are accustomed to gravity, what happens to them when we live long without it?
To answer these questions (at the scientific level), at least two limiting variables are required:
– A person (1) influenced by gravity.
-Other human (2) that is not. That is, to be in space.
But perhaps the most important and difficult point to find is that these two people must be the same, the clones to be ideal. Or, at least as much as possible.
"So what are you telling me is that we need a pair of identical twins that have the same genome, astronauts and that one of them wants to spend a long time in space while the other remains on the Earth only for science to study? "you ask.
The answer is yes, I am telling you that. And the most beautiful and unbelievable is that there. They are called Scott and Mark Kelly, and these are the two topics you see below.
What we learned
The results were published by the magazine Science and to get it, about 12 universities and about 84 scientists participated. The goal was to shed some light on the physical differences observed in twins to discover after staying at one of them in the international space station, a research center that orbits Earth, for a long time.
When they reached the space, almost immediately the organism noticed the weightlessness. He did not change his DNA structure, but he changed the expression of genes through epigenetic changes. In other words, the texts that contain the basic information about all our functions remain the same, but expressive patterns of that information were modified for more than 1000 genes. This can be interpreted as an immediate modification to adapt to new living conditions. Absolutely flashero (I do not know if you're thinking about it, but you need to think about it).
In addition to these immediate changes, others were even more incredible. Telomers, structures found at the tops of chromosomes whose function would be to protect genetic information, were expanded into space . This is exactly the opposite of what happens when we get older when telomeres are shortened.
So, in space, the cells became younger? I would like to say yes, but not. After returning to Earth, they returned to their "original" extension (that is, the one they had before the trip). And the same thing happened with the changes that occurred in gene expression.
At cognitive level, Space Scott had a significant drop and it takes six months to recover its spatial orientation and its motor precision.
The results show some absolutely wonderful things. First of all, that our body quickly adapts to the changes proposed by the space. On the other hand – and this is what NASA most likes – it those changes return to their original values when we return to a serious place.