Impacts of microgravity on amino acid metabolism during spaceflight. Academic Article uri icon


  • Spaceflight exerts an extreme and unique influence on human physiology as astronauts are subjected to long-term or short-term exposure to microgravity. During spaceflight, a multitude of physiological changes, including the loss of skeletal muscle mass, bone resorption, oxidative stress, and impaired blood flow, occur, which can affect astronaut health and the likelihood of mission success. In vivo and in vitro metabolite studies suggest that amino acids are among the most affected nutrients and metabolites by microgravity (a weightless condition due to very weak gravitational forces). Moreover, exposure to microgravity alters gut microbial composition, immune function, musculoskeletal health, and consequently amino acid metabolism. Appropriate knowledge of daily protein consumption, with a focus on specific functional amino acids, may offer insight into potential combative and/or therapeutic effects of amino acid consumption in astronauts and space travelers. This will further aid in the successful development of long-term manned space mission and permanent space habitats.

published proceedings

  • Exp Biol Med (Maywood)

author list (cited authors)

  • Dickerson, B. L., Sowinski, R., Kreider, R. B., & Wu, G.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Dickerson, Broderick L||Sowinski, Ryan||Kreider, Richard B||Wu, Guoyao

publication date

  • May 2023