New Canadian Studies Selected for ISS Research

David Saint-Jacques took ultrasound images of his blood vessels for Vascular Echo, a Canadian study led by Dr. Richard Hughson of the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging. (Credit: Canadian Space Agency/NASA)

Longueuil, Quebec (CSA PR) — The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) recently awarded funding to Canadian researchers to study the effects of space flight on the human body. The results of the studies could help support longer missions to more distant destinations like the Moon or Mars.

Dr. Richard Hughson
University of Waterloo
Up to $881,020 over six years

Long-term health consequences of cardiovascular changes caused by space flight

Dr. Stephen Boyd
University of Calgary
Up to $870,618 over six years

Using 3D high-resolution imaging to determine how space flight changes bone structure and strength

Dr. Santiago Costantino
Dr. Mark Lesk
Université de Montréal and the Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital
Up to $478,204 over five years

Rigidity of astronauts’ eyes as a risk factor for vision changes experienced during space flight

In a first for Canadian science on board the International Space Station, the Canadian experiments led by Dr. Hughson and Dr. Boyd will have the unique opportunity to study astronauts taking part in year-long missions – twice the length of standard stays aboard the orbiting laboratory. These investigations will work on the forefront of space science, as the biological effects of longer missions in microgravity are not yet well understood.

The third study, led by Dr. Santiago Costantino, will take a closer look at the causes of vision changes sometimes experienced by astronauts during six-month missions.

The trio of investigations were selected through NASA’s 2017 Human Exploration Research Opportunities program. Recruitment of astronaut participants is expected to begin in spring 2020.