NASA, Langston University partner to keep astronauts healthy for future long-term space travel

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LANGSTON, Okla. (KFOR) - A local university has teamed up with NASA to study the effects of micro-gravity on astronauts.

"Today is a big day. We're going to sign a document that establishes a relationship between NASA and Langston University," NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced a new partnership with the university to study the effects of micro-gravity on astronauts-- something that is key when considering long-term space travel.

"The research that will be done at Langston University is going to give us the counter measures that are necessary so humans are healthy all the way to Mars and all the way home," Bridenstine.

Students are also focused on ways to boost astronauts' immune systems. One strange fact about space travel is that dormant viruses-- like chickenpox--can activate during space-flight.

"We're trying to see what happens if we use plant extracts or natural countermeasures and seeing how that will affect the immune system to increase it,” Myshal Morris said.

They will send a payload of biological experiments to the international space station in August-- all aimed at supporting an astronaut's health in no gravity.

"Maybe you're flying all the way to Mars at that point, and there's no way for you to get healthy so we have to make sure we mitigate against that," Bridenstine said.

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