Space Travel Could Damage Astronaut’s Brain With Anxiety And Memory Loss


A new study suggests that traveling into space might pose some threats to an astronaut's brain. And with Nasa gearing up for its next manned mission to Mars, the new findings raise many eyebrows. A group of researchers from the University of California, Irvine (UCI), conducted this study and revealed the effects that space can have on a person's brain.

Space Travel Could Damage Astronaut’s Brain With Anxiety, Memory Loss


Effects On Brain At The Outer Space?

As per the study, one out of the five-member astronaut crew traveling to Mars will likely develop anxiety. Moreover, one in every 2.8 astronauts traveling to space could suffer from memory loss.

To test the effects on the brain, the scientists exposed mice to low-level radiations for six months to analyze its behavior. With low-dose-rate neutron irradiation the test subjects "had trouble with learning, adapting and storing memories". The subject also showed disinterest in new toys compared to the non-exposed subjects.

Also, the test subjects (mice) tried to evade well-lit compartments fastly and avoid social interaction as well. This suggests that the subjects were anxious and the reason could be the exposure to the neutrons.

It seems that the scientists are yet to find a solution to protect the astronauts from space radiation. Charles L. Limoli, co-author of the study along with his colleague said, "We along with other radiation biologists, are specifically concerned about astronauts because, with our current technology, there is no way to protect or shield them from space radiation".

This is a matter of concern for the astronomers considering there is no solution for this issue as of now. Besides, the earth is protected by the Ozone layer which protects the masses from harmful rays coming from the Galaxy. As soon as the astronauts leave the 'protective bubble' they are exposed to the galactic cosmic rays which can have various unknown effects on the human body.

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