Mini-Symposium Series

In November 2021, bioastronautics@hopkins began holding a series of mini-symposia, involving various topics related to human spacefilght. These events are hosted by the Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering Office of Research and Translation, as well as Hopkins@Home. bioastronautics@hopkins is led by Dr. Mark Shelhamer, Professor of Otolaryngology at the School of Medicine.

Upcoming: Space Surgery

October 25, 2022 | 2 p.m. EST

Register Here


Dr. George Pantalos

Dr. George Pantalos has been a cardiovascular explorer for over 45 years. He has been a Professor of Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgery and a Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Louisville, in partnership with Jewish Hospital and Norton Children’s Hospital, since July 2000, after holding similar appointments at the University of Utah for 17 years. George has also collaborated with NASA for many years helping to understand cardiovascular adaptation to the weightlessness of space flight and the return to Earth.  George as flown 43 research missions on the NASA parabolic flight aircraft and led the development of a cardiovascular diastolic function experiment which included an instrumented artificial heart beating on a circulation simulator that flew twice on the Space Shuttle Discovery.  Other reduced gravity research projects have included delivery of effective chest compressions for CPR in 0-G, organ perfusion in 0-G, and the development of surgical capabilities for exploration space missions.

Dr. Dani Carroll

Dr. Dani Carroll (General Surgery Resident, TRISH-funded Space Health researcher, USAF Veteran, and Instructor Pilot) earned her B.A. in Bioethics and Italian at the University of Virginia. After college, she flew high-performance jet aircraft as a Captain on active duty in the U.S. Air Force, later transitioning into the Reserve to attend med school back at UVa. After three years of residency at UCSD, she paused surgical training to serve as a NASA/TRISH Space Health Innovation Fellow. Dani has logged more than 1,100 flight hours in everything from T-38s to aerobatic taildraggers to seaplanes to WWII warbirds, such as the T-6A and P-51, maintaining currency by teaching. In her free time, she enjoys climbing, sailing, SCUBA diving, cooking, and running with her rescue pup, Rosie.



Dr. Kris Lehnhardt

Dr. Kris Lehnhardt is Element Scientist for Exploration Medical Capabilities in the NASA Human Research Program, and Associate Professor and Attending Physician at Baylor College of Medicine. He has an MD from Western University, a BSc in Bio-Medical Sciences from the University of Guelph, and serves as a Medical Specialist reservist in the Royal Canadian Air Force.




Statistical Approaches to Spaceflight Data – March 16, 2022

Systems Medicine for Spaceflight – November 15, 2021

For audience questions and panel member responses, please click here.

Virtual Symposium on Human Spaceflight:
Kickoff of bioastronautics@hopkins – February 24, 2021


Virtual Symposium on Human Spaceflight


NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor

Bioastronautics@hopkins held a Virtual Symposium on Human Spaceflight, on Feb. 24, 2021.This was the first event for the special interest group led by Mark Shelhamer, JHU Professor of Otolaryngology and former Chief Scientist of the NASA Human Research Program.Keynote speakers included physician and NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor, and N. Wayne Hale, Director of Human Spaceflight at Special Aerospace Services and the former Space Shuttle Program Manager at NASA. The symposium included researchers in the field from universities and institutions across the country. Below are some of the recorded presentations from the symposium.

Host: Mark Shelhamer, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Moderators: Mallika Sarma and Serena Tang, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Assistance was provided by JHU WSE’s Commercial and Government Program Office (Larry Nagahara, Peter Zeender, Linda McLean, Bruce Dennett, William Bagley)

 Bioastronautics Kickoff Event Schedule 

Video Presentations

Jason Kalirai, Space Exploration at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory – (No video)

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Opening Keynote – Wayne Hale, Special Aerospace Services; former Director of Space Shuttle Program at NASA
Erik Antonsen, Ending Siloes: The Need to Paint the Big Picture of Human System Risks in Human Spaceflight
Aenor Sawyer, The Health Sense Matrix for Space – (No video)

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Michael Schubert, Autonomous Rehab to Reduce Motion Sickness and Improve Balance – (No video)

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Mike Rosen, Team Physiological Dynamics and Communication Measurement Strategies for LDSE Competencies
Sharon Gerecht, 3D Human Vascular Models to Study Responses to Radiation and Hypoxia – (No video)

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Deok-Ho Kim – (No video)

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Serena Auñón-Chancellor – (No video)

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Human Spaceflight Special Interest Group


Photo courtesy of NASA

Johns Hopkins University is a major force in the area of spaceflight, with an emphasis on human health and performance, but connecting to all associated disciplines. The Human Spaceflight Special Interest Group will provide a unifying structure for activities in this field across the university by identifying and distributing funding and research opportunities, assisting with proposals, promoting cross disciplinary and integrated research, and assisting in student recruiting.


For information about the Human Spaceflight Special Interest Group, please contact:

Mark Shelhamer
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
(410) 614-5898


Funding Opportunities

    1. DEADLINE EXTENDED TO JULY 16: Interstellar Research Group Announces Scholarship Program for Rising College Undergraduates and Graduate Students.  – IRG Scholarship

The Sky is No Longer the Limit

Photo by Chris Hartlove. Story by Steve St. Angelo

It took a few extra trips around the sun, but Dorothy Coker has found her space in nursing.

Among a galaxy of reasons to choose among the five-star programs at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, Dorothy Coker saw one tiny black hole: There was no program designed for students interested in space nursing—preparing to handle the health and safety issues that will undoubtedly arise or increase with wildly accelerating near- and deep-space travel.

5-4-3-2-1 …

Coker arrived for the MSN (Entry into Nursing) program on a mission. “I immediately went looking for faculty to partner with on building a new program,” she says. “I initially met Dr. [Vinciya] Pandian interviewing for the Research Honors Program, and she has been so receptive and supportive of the idea. I was also really lucky to find support and mentorship in Dr. [Mark] Shelhamer, who runs the Human Spaceflight Lab over at the School of Medicine.”

To read the full article in the Johns Hopkins Nursing magazine, click here.

JHU Professor to Create Center for Space Life Sciences

Photo courtesy of Mark Shelhamer

Johns Hopkins Associate Professor Mark Shelhamer, left, is working to create a Center for Space Life Sciences at Johns Hopkins University. Shelhamer has spent much of his career studying the human body’s adaptations to space. Now he is trying to help NASA (and commercial entities) safely send humans into space and to Mars while mitigating some of the major risks to human health and performance.

To read the full article in the Johns Hopkins Magazine, click here.

Upcoming Events

There are no upcoming events.