Immunological and hematological outcomes following protracted low dose/low dose rate ionizing radiation and simulated microgravity
Using a ground-based model to simulate spaceflight [21-days of single-housed, hindlimb unloading (HLU) combined with continuous low-dose gamma irradiation (LDR, total dose of 0.04 Gy)], an in-depth survey of the immune and hematological systems of mice at 7-days post-exposure was performed. Collected blood was profiled with a hematology analyzer and spleens were analyzed by whole transcriptome shotgun sequencing (RNA-sequencing). The results revealed negligible differences in immune differentials. However, hematological system analyses of whole blood indicated large disparities in red blood cell differentials and morphology, suggestive of anemia. Murine Reactome networks indicated majority of spleen cells displayed differentially expressed genes (DEG) involved in signal transduction, metabolism, cell cycle, chromatin organization, and DNA repair. Although immune differentials were not changed, DEG analysis of the spleen revealed expression profiles associated with inflammation and dysregulated immune function persist to 1-week post-simulated spaceflight. Additionally, specific regulation pathways associated with human blood disease gene orthologs, such as blood pressure regulation, transforming growth factor-β receptor signaling, and B cell differentiation were noted. Collectively, this study revealed differential immune and hematological outcomes 1-week post-simulated spaceflight conditions, suggesting recovery from spaceflight is an unremitting process.
Paul, Amber M.; Overbey, Eliah G.; da Silveira, Willian A.; Szewczyk, Nathaniel; Nishiyama, Nina C.; Pecaut, Michael J.; Anand, Sulekha; Galazka, Jonathan M.; and Mao, Xiao Wen, "Immunological and hematological outcomes following protracted low dose/low dose rate ionizing radiation and simulated microgravity" (2021). Biomedical Sciences Open Access Publications. 136.