Preosteoblast production 55 hours after a 12.5-day spaceflight on Cosmos 1887

L. P. Garetto, M. R. Gonsalves, E. R. Morey, G. Durnova, W. E. Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


The influence of 12.5 days of spaceflight and a 55 h stressful recovery period (at 1 g) on fibroblastlike osteoblast precursor cells was assessed in the periodontal ligament (PDL) of rats that were 91 days old at launch. Nuclear morphometry was used as a marker for precursor cell differentiation in 3 μm sections cut in the midsagittal plane from the maxillary first molar. According to nuclear volume, cells were classified as preosteoblasts (C+D cells, ≥ 120 μm3) and less differentiated progenitor cells (A+A' cells, 40-79 μm3). Compared with synchronous controls (stimulated flight conditions), the 55 h postlight recovery period at 1 g resulted in a 40% decrease in the A+A' cell population, a 42% increase in the C+D cells, and a 39% increase in the number of PDL fibroblastlike cells near the bone surface. These results are consistent with a postflight osteogenic response in PDL. This recovery response occurred despite physiological stress in the flight animals that resulted in a highly significant (P ≤ 0.001) increase in adrenal weight. The data suggest that after spaceflight there is a strong and rapid recovery mechanism for osteoblast differentiation that is not suppressed by physiological stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-28
Number of pages5
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 12 1990


  • Bone
  • cell differentiation
  • microgravity
  • osteogenesis
  • physiological stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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  • Cite this

    Garetto, L. P., Gonsalves, M. R., Morey, E. R., Durnova, G., & Roberts, W. E. (1990). Preosteoblast production 55 hours after a 12.5-day spaceflight on Cosmos 1887. FASEB Journal, 4(1), 24-28.