Oct. 25 (UPI) -- NASA has announced some preliminary results from its Twins Study, an effort to study the effects of space travel on human health. The early findings suggest space travel boosts methylation, the process of switching genes on and off.
"Some of the most exciting things that we've seen from looking at gene expression in space is that we really see an explosion, like fireworks taking off, as soon as the human body gets into space," Chris Mason, lead researcher on the Twins Study, said in a news release late Tuesday. "With this study, we've seen thousands and thousands of genes change how they are turned on and turned off. This happens as soon as an astronaut gets into space, and some of the activity persists temporarily upon return to Earth."