ISS crew activities are limited today to allow the crew to enjoy the US Independence Day holiday.
For Rodent Research-7 (RR-7) today the crew transferred the mice from Transporter Units that arrived on the SpaceX-15 Dragon vehicle to the two Habitat units in which they will reside on ISS. They checked the water flow in each side of the Habitats and installed the rodent huts and food bars. The crew also stowed fecal pellets and food bar/Habitat swabs in a Minus Eighty Degree Celsius Laboratory Freezer for ISS (MELFI). The RR-7 investigation examines how the space environment affects the community of microorganisms in the gastrointestinal tract of mice (also known as the microbiota). It also looks at microgravity’s effects on multiple physiological systems known to be affected by the microbiota, including the gastrointestinal, immune, metabolic, circadian, and sleep systems. These studies should help explain mechanisms underlying interactions between these systems and the role of the microbiota in these interactions.