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Physiological and Anatomical Rodent Experiment 1 (DC85LS27)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Muscle physiology
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Rattus norvegicus Species: Rat Strain: Sprague-Dawley


Previous to PARE 01, the only studies comparing unweighting through microgravity and unweighting through hindlimb suspension were performed on adult rats. These studies have shown that posterior hindlimb muscles, the function of which depend on opposing the pull of gravity, are the most responsive to unweighting. Another effect found in unweighting studies has been the increased response of insulin to glucose transport. This experiment was designed to test the validity of using tail suspension methods as models for studying microgravity unweighting effects on developing rats. Several muscle parameters were compared between rats subjected to space flight and rats subjected to hindlimb suspension. A main objective was to determine whether microgravity causes an increase in glucose uptake in the presence or absence of insulin.

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Henriksen EJ, Tischler ME, Woodman CR, Munoz KA, Stump CS, Kirby CR: Elevated intestitial fluid volume in soleus muscles unweighted by spaceflight or suspension. Journal of Applied Physiology, vol. 75, 1993, pp. 1650-1653.

Henriksen, E.J., and M.E. Tischler. Time course of the response of carbohydrate metabolism to unloading of the soleus. (1988) Metabolism 37:201-208 (related study)

Henriksen, E.J., M.E. Tischler and D.G. Johnson. Increased response to insulin of glucose metabolism in the 6-day unloaded rat soleus muscle. (1986) Journal of Biological Chemistry 261:10707-10712 (related study)

Jaspers, S.R. and M.E. Tischler. Atrophy and growth failure of rat hindlimb muscles in tail-cast suspension. (1984) Journal of Applied Physiology 57:1472-1479 (related study)

Munoz, K.A. and M.E. Tischler. The effect of a space food bar diet on body and muscle mass in normal and hindlimb suspended rats. (1991) Aviation Space and Environmental Medicine 62:875-878 (related study).

Tischler ME, Henriksen EJ, Munoz KA, Stump CS, Woodman CR, and Kirby CR. Spaceflight on STS-48 and earth-based unweighting produce similar effects on skeletal muslce of young rats. J. Appl. Physiol., 74(5), 2161-2165, (1993).

Muscle, skeletal
Muscular atrophy

Data Information
Data Availability
Archive is complete. Some data sets are online.
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Consumption (uptake), Glucose, extensor digitorum, muscle, rat, Biochemistry
Consumption (uptake), Glucose, soleus, muscle, rat, Biochemistry
Content, Protein, total, extensor digitorum longus, muscle, rat, Biochemical
Content, Protein, total, plantaris, muscle, rat: Biochemistry
Content, Protein, total, soleus, muscle, rat: Biochemistry
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
STS-48 09/12/1991 09/18/1991 5 days

Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Ames Research Center (ARC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Ames Research Center LSDA Level 3
Project Manager: Sylvain Costes
Institutional Support
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Protocol / Approach
Asynchronous control
Tail suspension
Proposal Date
Proposal Source
Dear Colleague Letter