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Monitoring of Bone Loss Biomarkers in Human Sweat: A Non-Invasive, Time Efficient Means of Monitoring Bone Resorption Markers under Micro and Partial Gravity Loading Conditions

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

We propose to validate that the rate and extent of unloading-induced bone loss in humans can be assessed by monitoring the levels of two bone resorption markers in sweat, namely ionized calcium and collagen break-down products. Initial testing will be carried out in a young healthy population (at rest and during activity) and then in a clinical population undergoing active bone loss, namely spinal cord injury patients. All groups will include both male and female participants. Biomarker concentration will be determined in contemporaneous samples of sweat, blood, and urine collected during both short (24 hr) and long-term studies (multiple sessions over a period of months) to define the relationship between biomarker levels in the respective biological samples. Several different sweat collection techniques will be investigated to determine the most appropriate and efficient means of sample collection suitable for deployment during a space flight mission. These experiments will also include investigation of the most appropriate biomarker analysis techniques that allow for future deployment in micro- or partial gravity environments. This near-real-time monitoring approach may also provide the information required to justify modifying an ineffective bone loss countermeasure prescription during a mission. One of the approaches tested will be a novel, micro-fabricated fluid collection capillary array, known as the micro-fabricated sweat patch (MSP) device, specifically developed for use in microgravity. The MSP technology was initially developed because of its potential to become an autonomous, solid-state collection/analysis device worn on the skin of an astronaut requiring little or no crew interaction to perform its monitoring function.

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.