Colin Kruse, Wyatt Lab manager and researcher, is looking for genes not yet identified as related to gravity response in plants. To do this, Colin and Dr. Sarah Wyatt enlisted the help of NASA to germinate seedlings in microgravity conditions aboard the International Space Station. The spaceflown samples have since returned to earth and Colin will soon complete the next milestone in the NASA-sponsored BRIC-20 microgravity experiment. Using RNA extracted from spaceflown seedlings and ground controls, Colin hopes to identify the genes involved in the plant signalling biochemical pathway.
This gallery contains 6 photos.
Despite a winter storm and icy roads, a NASA contracted FedEx vehicle arrived Wednesday to deliver the space flown test and ground control samples to the Ohio University Wyatt Lab.
How to Send Your Experiment into Space: Anatomy of a Space Experiment
Scientists studying the effects of gravity face the difficulty of designing experiments that isolate the effects of gravity. Ideally, this means conducting an experiment in the absence of gravity – no easy task while on Earth. Certainly, the best place to run a long-term gravity experiment is space or while orbiting the Earth in microgravity conditions; however, getting your experiment into space might be as hard as neutralizing gravity on Earth. This is the dilemma Dr. Sarah Wyatt faced in the search for the genes controlling the signaling pathways of plants responding to changes in gravity.
When NASA Research sent out a call for research proposals for the International Space Station (ISS), Wyatt recognized an opportunity for the Wyatt Lab to take their gravitropism research to the next level. Perhaps you have an experiment you want to run aboard the ISS? Or maybe you just want to know what it takes to get on the ISS research roster. The following briefly describes some of the major milestones in designing and deploying an experiment in space.
Figure 1: NASA BRIC-20 Major Project Milestones
This gallery contains 7 photos.
During the first week of September, the BRIC-20 space experiment moved one big step closer to the December 2014 launch date as members from both the Wyatt Lab (Ohio University) and the Luesse Lab (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville) arrived at … Continue reading
On July 8th, Dr. Wyatt and Dr. Luesse, principle investigators for the NASA BRIC-20 experiment, met at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida to begin work on the science verification testing (SVT) phase of the project. Continue reading