New study will investigate the effects of microgravity on the formation of biofilms; could lead to safer and healthier space travel.
Troy, N.Y. – A team of researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will send an army of microorganisms into space this week, to investigate new ways of preventing the formation and spread of biofilms, or clusters of bacteria, that could pose a threat to the health of astronauts.
The Micro-2 experiment, led by Cynthia Collins, assistant professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Rensselaer, is scheduled to launch into orbit on May 14 aboard Space Shuttle Atlantis.
The Micro-2 research team will also test if newly developed, nanotechnology-based antimicrobial surfaces – developed by Dordick at Rensselaer – can help slow the growth of biofilms on Earth and in microgravity. If successful, these new antimicrobial surfaces could one day be used in hospitals and spacecraft to help reduce the impact of biofilms on human health. ###
- For more information on the project, visit: spacebiosciences.arc.nasa.gov/micro2
- For additional information on Collins' research, visit: www.rpi.edu/~collic3/Cynthia_Collins
- For additional information on Dordick's research, visit: enzymes.che.rpi.edu/Research
- For additional information Plawsky's research, visit: www.rpi.edu/dept/chem-eng/WWW/faculty/plawsky/jlp.res
Contact: Michael Mullaney, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Troy, NY. 518-276-6161 (office) 518-698-6336 (mobile) email@example.com