Saba, Angela (2011) Utilizzo delle Biotecnologie Spaziali per lo studio di alcuni meccanismi cellulari e molecolari dell’immunosenescenza mediante esperimenti in vivo e in vitro in condizioni di microgravità simulata. Doctoral Thesis.
During the past 40 years of human space flights it has been confirmed that exposure to microgravity affects almost all human physiological systems. The more common among these alterations show strong analogies with the corresponding cellular and molecular processes present in the immunosenescence. The limited access to experimentation in real microgravity in space strongly suggests to use ground-based facilities. The Random Positioning Machine (RPM) has been used so far as a suitable facility for in vitro cellular physiology studies. The main goal of the first part of my research was to further contribute to the validation of the RPM as facility for in vivo experiments by studying bone marrow cells mineralization in young male rats exposed to simulated microgravity. Studying the mutual changes seen in the immunosenescence through in vivo and in vitro experiments in simulated microgravity, can be an experimental instrument for a better comprehension of some processes seen in the elderly people. In the second part of my Ph.D. we paid special attention to an interesting analogy found both in the microgravity effects on the immune system and haematic parameters in the elderly people, the increased apoptosis and cytokines levels. In vivo and in vitro experiments in simulated microgravity conditions were carried out to evaluate the phagocytosis capability in macrophages. Finally, we evaluated the phagocytosis capability of macrophages obtained from elderly people.
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