Pin It

A team of US and Netherlands-based scientists has published a review paper highlighting ways to protect astronauts from the negative cardiovascular health impacts associated with exposure to space radiation during long-distance space travel.

Space radiation is currently regarded as the most limiting factor for long-distance space travel because exposure to it is associated with significant negative effects on the human body. However, data on these effects are currently only available for those members of the Apollo programme that travelled as far as the Moon – too small a number from which to draw any significant conclusions about the effects of the space environment on the human body. In addition, although exposure to space radiation, including galactic cosmic rays and solar “proton storms”, has previously been linked to the development of cancer and neurological problems, data on the consequences of space radiation exposure for the cardiovascular system are lacking.

In an effort to address these limitations, researchers based at the University Medical Center (UMC) Utrecht, Leiden University Medical Center, Radboud University and the Technical University Eindhoven in the Netherlands, as well as Stanford University School of Medicine and Rice University in the US, have carried out an exhaustive review of existing evidence to establish what we know about the cardiovascular risks of space radiation. They present their findings in the journal Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine.

To read more, click here.