A team of scientists have been working on the DNA combination of tardigrades with human cells to make astronauts withstand extreme conditions in space and protect them from harmful radiation.
It has been reported that scientists have been trying to combine tardigrade DNA with human cells to allow astronauts to withstand the deadly effects of spaceflight. The tardigrades, creatures that can survive extreme temperatures and the vacuum of space, have a protein called Dsup to protect them from radiation.
Experts believe that the DNA of tardigrades could be used to genetically modify humans, allowing them to resist the deadly effects of radiation and help astronauts travel long distances in space, such as landing on Mars. The tardigrades can live for a decade without water and even survive in space.
Chris Mason, geneticist and associate professor of physiology and biophysics of the Weill Cornell University In New York, he has recently been working to combine human cells with the microscopic vertebrate nuclear protein that helps water bears survive conditions that kill almost any other organism.
Mason believes that the DNA of the world’s most indestructible animals could be key to taking humans to Mars, since astronauts could be bombarded with 700 times the radiation experienced on Earth, and the genetic engineering of an astronaut could also locate it. successfully on Mars. Like other distant worlds.
Researchers currently working on this innovation are exploring how to combine the DNA of other species such as tardigrades with human cells to make them more resistant to the harmful effects of spaceflight, since scientists will first have to design a process that allows them to activate or disable specific genetic expressions. These small segmented creatures are found everywhere, from the highest Himalayan mountain range to the deepest oceans.
The 1mm eight-legged creature that has existed for 530 million years and survived the dinosaurs is so resistant that it will remain alive 200 years later, even if it is boiled, frozen, dried or exposed to radiation, and can live at temperatures as low as -457 degrees and heat as high as 357 degrees. Mason said the technology could also be used to “combat the effects of radiation on healthy cells during the treatment of Cancer on earth”.
However, he said he did not have a plan to create genetically modified astronauts in the near future.
Mason said to Space.com:
If we have another 20 years of pure discovery and mapping and functional validation of what we think we know, I hope that in 20 years we will be on stage to make a human that can survive better on Mars. ”
The researcher believes that it should be an ethical process if the genetic engineering of humans makes them “capable of inhabiting Mars safely without interfering with their ability to live on Earth.” Meanwhile, some space biologists can even send these creatures to survive on Mars before humans can reach the red planet.
How about creating genetically modified humans with tardigrade DNA? In a great development or is it something that goes against everything ethical? Leave your opinions.