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Early Postnatal Development of Rats Exposed In Utero to Microgravity (COS 1514-2)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Developmental biology
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Rattus norvegicus Species: Rat Strain: Wistar


The last trimester of the rat's gestational period is a stage of formation and differentiation of sensory and motor systems vital to early survival and postnatal maturation. As part of a broad research program designed to examine the adequacy of maternal care following space flight and evaluate the postnatal development of the infant rats, this study represents a preliminary appraisal of the functional status of sensory and motor systems in the infant rat. It charts some of the fundamental landmarks of maturation during the first two to three weeks of postnatal life.

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Alberts, J.R. et al.: Early Postnatal Development of Rats Exposed In Utero to Microgravity. Final Reports of U.S. Monkey and Rat Experiments Flown on the Soviet Satellite Cosmos 1514. R.C. Mains and E.W. Gomersall, eds., NASA TM-88223, 1986, pp. 145-188.

Alberts, J.R. et al.: Early Postnatal Development of Rats Gestated During Flight of Cosmos 1514. Physiologist, supl., vol. 28, no. 6, 1985, pp. S81-S82.

Serova, L.V. et al.: Growth and Development of Newborn Rats During Their First Month of Life. Ontogenez Mlekopitayuschikh v Nevesomosti (Ontogenesis of Mammals in Microgravity), O.G. Gazenko, ed., Nauka, 1988, pp. 82-88.

Ronca, A. E., Lamkin, C. A., & Alberts, J. R. (1993). Maternal contributions to sensory experience in the fetal and newborn rat (Rattus norvegicus). Journal of Comparative Psychology, 107(1), 61-74. [DOI]

Motor activity
Animals, newborn

Data Information
Data Availability
Archive is complete. No data sets are available for this experiment. Please Contact LSDA if you know of available data for this investigation.

Growth, rate, Rat, Measurement
Morphology, Rat neonate, Microscopy (descriptive)
Morphology, Sexual differentiation, rat, neonate, Observation
Properties, Anogenital distance (AG), rat, Measurement
Respiration, rate, Nasal, rat pups, Observation
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
Cosmos 1514 12/14/1983 12/19/1983 5 days

Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Ames Research Center (ARC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Ames Research Center LSDA Level 3
Project Manager: Helen Stewart
Institutional Support
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Alternate Experiment Name
Protocol / Approach
Hardware Items