Experiments in Space clearly show that various cellular processes, such as growth rates, signaling pathways and gene expression, are modified when cells are placed under conditions of weightlessness. As yet, there is no coherent explanation for these observations, though recent experiments, showing that microtubule self-organization is gravity-dependent suggest that investigations at the molecular level might fill the gap between observation and understanding of Space effects. Lipoxygenases are a family of dioxygenases which have been implicated in the pathogenesis of several inflammatory conditions, in atherosclerosis, in brain aging and in HIV infection. In plants, lipoxy-genases favour germination, participate in the synthesis of traumatin and jasmonic acid and in the response to abiotic stress. Here, we took advantage of a fibre optics spectrometer developed on purpose, the EMEC (Effect of Microgravity on Enzymatic Catalysis) module, to measure the dioxygenation reaction by pure soybean lipoxygenase-1 (LOX-1) during the 28th parabolic flight campaign of the European Space Agency (ESA). The aim was to ascertain whether microgravity can affect enzyme catalysis.
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