A low power, handheld PCR DNA melting analysis device was designed to analyze DNA damage resulting from radiation. Because astronauts can be exposed to high levels of radiation in space, NASA hopes to incorporate such DNA analysis instruments on future missions to Mars or the moon to monitor the astronaut health.
the analysis device had is compact, light, and low-powered for space travel. At the same time, it is rugged and resilient to function in unpredictable conditions.
Beyond monitoring astronaut health, the device could also aid researchers in the search for extraterrestrial life. By finding and analyzing DNA from another part of the universe, researchers will better understand the origins of life on earth since primordial conditions cannot be reproduced on Earth.
Also, the handheld device could have earthbound application in medical diagnostics applications for first responders where stability of the temperature control is important. EMTs could carry the DNA analysis device in extreme conditions such as high temperatures and high humidity.
Crews, Niel, Dr.
CENTER FOR BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING AND REHABILITATION SCIENCE (CBERS) / INSTITUTE FOR MICROMANUFACTURING / MECHANICAL ENGINEERING
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