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Aquacells — Flagellates under long-term microgravity and potential usage for life support systems

  • Donat-P. Häder
  • Peter R. Richter
  • S. M. Strauch
  • M. Schuster
Article

Abstract

The motile behavior of the unicellular photosynthetic flagellate Euglena gracilis was studied during a two-week mission on the Russian satellite Foton M2. The precision of gravitactic orientation was high before launch and, as expected, the cells were unoriented during microgravity. While after previous short-term TEXUS flights the precision of orientation was as high as before launch, it took several hours for the organisms to regain their gravitaxis. Also the percentage of motile cells and the swimming velocity of the remaining motile cells were considerably lower than in the ground control. In preparatory experiments the flagellate Euglena was shown to produce considerable amounts of photosynthetically generated oxygen. In a coupling experiment in a prototype for a planned space mission on Foton M3, the photosynthetic producers were shown to supply sufficient amounts of oxygen to a fish compartment with 35 larval cichlids, Oreochromis mossambicus.

Keywords

Motile Cell Life Support System Swimming Velocity Euglena Gracilis Oreochromis Mossambicus 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Z-Tec Publishing 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donat-P. Häder
    • 1
  • Peter R. Richter
    • 1
  • S. M. Strauch
    • 1
  • M. Schuster
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Biologie der Friedrich-Alexander-UniversitätErlangenGermany

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