Space Cadet or Space Brain

While no astronauts have travelled to Mars yet, and most of us won’t be travelling to Mars anytime soon, scientists at the University of California: Irvine have done extensive research on what traveling to Mars most likely will do to the human brain.

The results are a phenomenon scientists have dubbed “space brain” and the results are as much a cautionary tale as they are a sad reality.

During the extended spaceflight from Earth to Mars, astronauts will be slammed with non-stop exposure to highly energetic charged particles, and all that will most likely lead to significant long-term brain damage, cognitive impairments, and dementia.

While it’s not known for certain if this will absolutely happen, test rodents in simulated environments at the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory at New York’s Brookhaven National Laboratory have suffered these adverse consequences.

The study appears today in Nature’s Scientific Reports.

http://www.nature.com/articles/srep34774

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