Four members of the Analysis Working Groups (AWG) were recently awarded NASA grants for new space biology research to better understand how living systems respond, acclimate, and adapt to the space environment in support of human space exploration.
The awarded proposals represent the diversity of basic science research conducted by NASA’s Space Biology Program. They include microbiology investigations to understand microbial behavior and genetics, plant studies to advance knowledge in areas of gravitropic responses and crop plant biology, and research in physiological response by animals to altered gravity. Many of these investigations will employ cutting-edge systems biology analytical techniques that will provide data for identifying underlying mechanisms and networks that respond to or govern biological processes in space. The bioinformatics data generated from these studies will be submitted to GeneLab for open science access. The awardees include:
Plant Biology Studies: Chris Wolverton, Ph.D. Ohio Wesleyan University: RNA-Seq Guided Mutant Analysis to Discover New Components of Gravity Signaling in Plants, and
Simon Gilroy, Ph.D. University Of Wisconsin, Madison: Spaceflight Effects on Plant-Microbe Interactions
Microbiology Studies: Camilla Urbaniak, Ph.D. ZIN Technologies, Inc: Microgravity Analogs as Proxies for Spaceflight to Validate Biofilm Formation and the Exchange of Genes Between Organisms
Postdoctoral Fellowship: Eliah Overbey (PI: Christopher Mason, Ph.D.) Weill Medical College of Cornell University: High-resolution, murine spatial transcriptome mapping of the impact of spaceflight
GeneLab established AWGs in 2018 for the sole purpose of optimizing the processing of raw spaceflight and ground-related omics data from the GeneLab repository, maximizing the generation of new knowledge from these rare and complex datasets, and improving the effectiveness of the GeneLab Data System through extensive utilization of analytics.
Click here for full list of NASA Space Biology grant awardees.