NASA could change the DNA of Astronauts heading towards Mars mission

This computer-generated view depicts part of Mars at the boundary between darkness and daylight, with an area including Gale Crater beginning to catch morning light, in this handout image provided by NASA. It may not be space debris, errant asteroids, supply shortages, thruster malfunctions or even the malevolent aliens envisioned in so many Hollywood films that thwart astronauts on any mission to Mars. It may be the ubiquitous galactic cosmic rays. Researchers said on May 1, 2015 long-term exposure to these rays that permeate space may cause dementia-like cognitive impairments in astronauts during any future round-trip Mars trip, expected to take at least 2-1/2 years. REUTERS/NASA/JPL-Caltech/Handout FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

Although researchers are trying to more and more information about the Mysterious red planet, still it has many more surprises packed inside it. NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft, Curiosity rover, Mars Odyssey Orbiter, all are getting detailed and surprising information regarding the Red Planet. But for NASA, the manned journey to Mars is not easy. It is filled with many hurdles and the most important hurdle is how to actually keep the astronauts alive on the red planet.

We all know that astronauts journeying into deep space are always exposed to the high energy particles released from the Sun. This harmful radiation can increase the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases in the astronauts.

Actually, On our Earth, we are protected by our planet’s magnetosphere- an invisible force-field that deflects back these harmful particles into space. But in the dark space outside our Earth, there no such protection which has pushed NASA to find out an effective solution for this problem. Because you cannot change the space, all you can do is to change yourself and develop technologies that can adapt such extreme conditions.

NASA’s chief technologist Dr. Douglas Terrier told The Times that the organization had not only looked at conventional drug-based therapies but also the far more controversial step of actually altering the DNA of the astronauts themselves. This might include modifying or tweaking the DNA of the astronauts in order to turn up or activated genetic instruction which could in return, alter the body so that it would be able to create its own defenses against the harmful radiations of Sun.

Although these solutions do possess a lot of ethical consequences, NASA has not ruled out them completely. Also, some of the conventional approaches include armor plating which would cover the entire spaceship, creating special suits or developing an artificial magnetic field that would protect the astronauts just like our Earth protects us.

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