Spaceflight, just like aging, causes profound changes in musculoskeletal parameters, which result in decreased bone density and muscular weakness. As these conditions decrease our ability to conduct long-term manned space missions, and increase bone frailty in the elderly, the identification of genes responsible for the apparition of these physiological changes will be of great benefit. Thus, we developed and implemented a new microarray approach to investigate the changes in normal WI38 human fibroblast gene expression that arise as a consequence of space flight. Using our microarray, we identified changes in the level of expression of 10 genes, belonging to either the tumor necrosis factor- (TNF) or interleukin- (IL) related gene families in fibroblasts when WI38 cells exposed to microgravity during the STS-93 Space Shuttle mission were compared with ground controls. The genes included two ligands from the TNF superfamily, TWEAK and TNFSF15; two TNF receptor-associated proteins, NSMAF and PTPN13; three TNF-inducible genes, ABC50, PTX3, and SCYA13; TNF-alpha converting enzyme, IL-1 receptor antagonist, and IL-15 receptor alpha chain. Most of these are involved in either the regulation of bone density, and as such the development of spaceflight osteopenia, or in the development of proinflammatory status.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||The FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology|
|Publication status||Published - 2002|