A Polish satellite to study cancer cells in space is being created

Bionanosatellite will help develop new oncological therapies and medicines. It is designed and constructed by Polish scientists, including researchers from the PAS Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy in Wrocław.

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The cell response to administered substances may be several dozen times stronger in space than on Earth. Bionanosatellite will enable to run biological and biomedical experiments on microorganisms and cells in low gravity.

Research will help determine how the growth dynamics of cancer cells exposed to drugs proceeds under microgravity conditions. In the future, research of this type may lead to the development of new cancer therapies, antibiotic therapies or medicines.

The future of cancer research

The CubeSat bionanosatellite measures only 10x10x30 cm. It is equipped with small chip laboratories. The scientific phase of the project is scheduled for 18 months. After this time, the satellite will be launched into space. In the future, the developed technology may be used by other companies or institutions, e.g. pharmaceutical companies.

Cooperation between science and business

The new satellite will be built by the Wrocław-based company SatRevolution, while microchip laboratories will be jointly developed by the following institutions: PAS Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy, Wrocław University of Technology, Wrocław Medical University, and the Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences.

The project is worth 4 million zlotys and it is financed by the European Union as part of the Regional Development Strategy of the Voivodeship of Lower Silesia. The funds were awarded by the National Center for Research and Development under the Operational Program Smart Growth 2014-2020.

Source of information: Wrocław University of Technology