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Resistant bacteria on the ISS demonstrated

researchers have discovered aboard the space station ISS-resistant strains of bacteria. They are of earthly origin, but are now mutated. NASA is therefore working on improved methods for Cleaning.

In Jet Propulsion Laboratoy, California Pasadena is the U.S. space Agency, NASA, its space probes. In a so-called Cleanroom, the employees look a little like Doctors during an Operation: they wear scrubs, mask and cap. It's not nice, but should ensure that the probe will not be given any earthly bacteria. Currently, the next Mars Rover is here in the Assembly hall, which will be launched in two years to the red planet.

"Everything launch NASA and ESA, corresponding to the internationally recognized planetary protection guidelines. We will send only clean space ships in space. And the Cleanrooms themselves are also pretty clean," says Rakesh Mogul. He is a biochemist at the California State Polytechnic University in Pomona. Together with his Team, he has in the past few years, the NASA probe "Mars Odyssey" and the Lander "Phoenix" immediately before the Start on the bacteria investigated, after the ships assembled, and by the ground team once more cleaned were.

In Pasadena a NASA manufacturing plant is located. There will be space probes are mounted.

Acinetobacter loves told alcohol

Mogul: "Many of the bacteria died. But others do not have survived, however, the General cleaning only, but even increased. You seem to be not only tolerant of the detergents, they seem to like you even more."

As a particularly resistant bacteria of the type Acinetobacter. You do not have to create a cleaning agent such as hydrogen peroxide, nor drought, radiation, high pressure or heat. In hospitals you can fight back against antibiotics and sometimes even for lung inflammation.

It has been proven that they feed from the Ethanol cleaning agent. You burn it to produce energy, the carbon in the alcohol to build up their own DNA and protein synthesis.

bacteria in 400 kilometers of height

The Problem of resistant microbes not only relates to space probes on the way to Mars, but also the International space station (ISS). Around 400 kilometers above our heads the bacteria.

The micro-Ralf Möller biologists are not surprised. The ISS was created from the people and into the space which is now inhabited by people. The number of germs that a person is carrying around is greater than the number of cells of which it consists.

"astronauts, we can not make germ-free"

Möller works at the Institute for aerospace medicine in Cologne, Germany and waited almost to the fact that after 20 years of ISS operation there more live feel than the six-member astronaut crew. Among other things, Acinetobacter and Enterobacter were found.

"The Enterobacter found, are micro-organisms, which are closely associated with the people. Enterobacter, one would suspect, in any case, in the gut," says Möller.

It is not so alien resulting bacteria. Rather, the Crew of the ISS need to have introduced yourself. "The astronauts, we can not make germ-free. And materials, we build on the earth for the space station together, we get free Bud."

The ISS (at the bottom in the middle) happens to the moon on Board, has astronauts and many bacteria. (File photo)

Mutated microbes ...

So that the story could actually come to an end. Once wet through the wipe and it is good. The only Problem is: The Enterobacter in All do not correspond to 100% of the Enterobacter on the floor. In fact, they seem to mutate at All.

"man and microbe have adapted to the earth. On the space station, you enter a new area, and both are changing. Try to look as good as possible. The question for us is, of course: make it the microorganisms faster and better than humans?", ask Möller. "That is to say, perhaps, in our case, Some of the organisms, antibiotic resistance, wear, and other organisms that carry resistance to antibiotics."

... due to radiation and weightlessness

The Lander is "the Phoenix" started with bacteria.

at the moment, it's now 1:0 for the bacteria. They were faster than humans. Möller from the German center for air and space travel, and has a suspicion what this could be: "We have ongoing conditions on the space station, we do not find on earth. The a the gravity, the higher the radiation exposure, because we are in a higher Orbit. The micro-organisms have adapted to this planet normal gravity conditions and higher radiation exposure. On the space station these are all conditions that have changed."

The zero gravity favors so-called biofilms - the multi-layered build-up of bacteria. The radiation is likely to have led to genetic defects in the bacteria that were antibiotic resistant.

NASA is working on additional cleaning

International superior scientists, how you can defeat the stubborn bacteria. Linda Pratt, the planetary protection officer, NASA, says: "Perhaps we need to do a second or third treatment, which added to the microbes to be different. Maybe we will be in addition to the chemical treatment with alcohol or a UV - or gamma-rays. If the microbes can use, the first treatment to their advantage, panning, we then have a second leg."

For the meantime, has come up with NASA for a solution that is pretty simple. The alcohol residues can be easily wiped clean with a distilled water-soaked cloth. Pratt says: "A very simple, purposeful and surprising attempt. We take away the bacteria in your feed again."

bacteria on the ISS
Guido Meyer, NDR,
18.12.2018 14:27 PM

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Astronaut Gerst: "Our confidence has increased," 08.11.2018 bacteria on the ISS demonstrated, Guido Meyer, NDR |audio Atlas |USA |Pasadena

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