There's a Lot of Sperm on the International Space Station Right Now
13 April, 2018, 22:48
In other words, having sex aboard on ISS and examine how the sperm squirm in weightlessness - is their plan.
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In a bid to study the deep interior of the Red Planet and find traces of how it was formed, NASA is all set to send a first-ever such mission to Mars. Before this can happen, the sperm cell must be activated to start moving.
In previous experiments with urchin and bull sperm, activation happens quicker in microgravity, but the steps that lead up to successful fusing are very delayed or simply do not happen at all. "Delays or problems at this stage could prevent fertilization from happening in space".
Nasa is sending up human sperm for the first time, but bull sperm is being sent up again for comparison.
The experiment could also offer new insights into the ways long-duration spaceflight will influence human reproduction. However, human sperm are inherently more varied in motion and appearance.
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In a statement, the agency said: "Little is now known about the biology of reproduction in space, and this experiment will begin to address that gap by measuring, for the first time, how well bull and human sperm functions in space".
The astronauts aboard the ISS will thaw and chemically activate the samples to prepare them for union with an egg Using video recording they will track the sperm movements and send them back to Earth for further analysis. So, the measurements of bull sperm will provide quality control to ensure the researchers can detect subtle differences in sperm from both species.
As our Earth is facing the issues of climate change and global warming, it has become necessary for the scientists to study and understand our Earth's climate in a better way.
Afterward, the spermatozoa will be returned to the University of Kansas to see whether time in space altered their behavior.
The Micro-11 mission, which made its way to space aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket's Dragon resupply capsule, amounts to a bunch of containers of frozen human and bull sperm.
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