Morpheus - Hypometabolic Stasis in Humans for Long term Space Flight

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M. Ayre; C. Zancanaro; M. Malatesta (2004), JBIS, 57, 325-339

Refcode: 2004.57.325
Keywords: Human, hibernation, space, travel, flight, extended

An overview of the application of hypometabolic stasis (HS) to humans for long-term space flight is presented. In the first section, the paper begins with a discussion of why HS in humans would be, from a resource-driven perspective, desirable during long-term space flight. The second section then reviews mammalian hibernation, covering behavioural, physiological and genetic strategies. The third part presents a general review of the effects on human physiology of the space environment, and the overlapping areas between the likely physiological effects of human-hibernation and the space environment are briefly discussed. In the fourth section, possible hibernation strategies for humans are considered, including pharmacological, genetic and environ- mental tactics. The fifth section briefly discusses the impact of human hibernation at a system level, particularly with regards to life support. The report finishes by concluding that the achievement of the goal of human hibernation on the Earth will probably take decades of research. Hibernation in space, with the concomitant increases in the complexity of the problem caused by the space environment, will be substantially more difficult to achieve. But, if realised, it will be of significant benefit to the extension of human presence in space.


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