Published in Microbiome, a new analysis of microorganisms living aboard the International Space Station has found an unusually high proportion of bacteria specifically found on human skin.
As the journal Nautilus notes, the study is a good illustration of the consequences of using recycled and filtered air.
More human skin-based bacteria and two different kinds of pathogens were discovered in the ISS environment than cleanrooms based on Earth.
The study authors hope to contribute to a greater understanding of what it means to preserve astronaut health. This is especially important, considering humanity’s continued longing for Mars. By better understanding the environment of the ISS we can go on to ensure a safer, healthier environment for participants of any type of manned mission to the Red Planet.