Space Medicine and its Benefits for Health on Earth

On the 6th and 7th of February 2021, the University of Aberdeen Aviation and Space Medicine Society will be hosting their very first interactive virtual student conference!

Abstract submissions are now closed. Check your emails in the coming week to see whether you were successful. Good luck!

Keynote Speakers

Dr Bonnie Posselt

Dr Bonnie Posselt will be presenting from 16:30-17:30 (GMT) on Sunday 7th February.

Dr. Bonnie Posselt is a medical officer in the Royal Air Force (UK), specialising in Aviation and Space Medicine. Currently undertaking a PhD in human performance using Helmet Mounted Displays in the aviation environment, Bonnie lives in Ohio, working at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

Bonnie is a graduate of the International Space University Space Studies Programme and is an associate fellow of the Aerospace Medical Association and the Royal Aeronautical Society. She continues to be an active member of the Austrian Space Forum’s medical team, having been a health and safety officer for a 5 week analog space mission in Oman.

Dr Li Shean Toh

Dr Li Shean Toh will be presenting from 19:00-20:00 (GMT) on Sunday 7th February.

Dr Li Shean Toh is an assistant professor at the Division of Pharmacy Practice and Policy. Prior to her appointment at the division she worked as a lecturer in medicines management at the University of Tasmania, Australia. Li Shean obtained her PhD from the University of Nottingham and she has worked as a pharmacist in various areas which includes tertiary hospital, general practice and community. 

Li Shean’s main research goal is to be the catalyst to improve clinical practice by utilizing evidence-based research. She seeks to combine both qualitative and quantitative methodologies to inform and change practice and policy. Her latest research is in a novel field called Astropharmacy. She is the lead pharmacy practice researcher in Astropharmacy. This project involves developing pharmacy services in space travel and mitigating medication-related problems for space tourists and other space travellers. Li Shean is also keen on learning about medication effects in analogue space research such as bed rest studies. She has funded projects with the UK Space Agency.

Her other area of expertise is to explore the pharmacists’ role in patient care most notably in osteoporosis and Australian prescribing. Her recent research developed a pharmacist-led osteoporosis screening program in Malaysia and Australia. Li Shean’s internationalism has sparked a keen interest in cultural competencies and discrimination research. 

Dr Sheyna Gifford

Dr Sheyna Gifford will be presenting from 19:30-20:30 (GMT) on Saturday 6th February.

Dr. Sheyna Gifford (MD, MBA, MS, MA) is a simulated astronaut, physician specializing in rehabilitation medicine, and an aerospace researcher. Dr. Gifford was the crew health and safety officer for the longest space analog in US history and a mission specialist on HERA VI, a simulated mission to Mars-crossing asteroid Geographos. She received dual-degrees from the University of California at Berkeley in 2003, a Masters of Science in Biotechnology in 2005, an MD in 2013, a Masters in Science Journalism in 2015, and an MBA in 2019. She is currently enrolled in a degree in Space Studies at the University of North Dakota. Her goals are to improve the lives of people living on Earth and in space via exercise, countermeasures to loss of ambulation under gravity (either from injury or living in microgravity), and exquisitely engineered live/work environments (aka human factors improvements). Sheyna hopes to one day test all ~1125 tasks required for a Mars mission, launch to landing 30 months later, in a high fidelity simulation.

Dr Christina Mackaill

Dr Christina Mackaill will be presenting from 13:30-14:30 (GMT) on Saturday 6th February.

Dr Christina Mackaill is a Clinical Fellow in Emergency Medicine, hoping to pursue a career in Emergency & Space Medicine. She has authored 2 papers on CPR in space and is currently working on a research paper with NASA about the emergency treatment of astronauts. She is part of the Austrian Space Forum’s medical team and works closely with Innovaspace on education and research.

Prof Floris Wuyts

Prof Floris Wuyts will be presenting from 09:30-10:30 (GMT) on Saturday 6th February.

Floris Wuyts is head of the Lab for Equilibrium Investigations and Aerospace (LEIA) at the University of Antwerp in Belgium. He obtained his PhD in Physics in 1991 with a topic on blood vessel elasticity. He works since 1994 at an otolaryngology department and became tenure professor at the University of Antwerp in 2002. He currently teaches Medical Physics, Physics and Biostatistics, as well as selected topics at the courses of neuroscience and cardiology. For a decade long he participated in the course of Audiological Medicine at the University College in London. He teaches since 2011 at King’s College in London in the Master course on Space Physiology and Health. Wuyts has 228 papers and according to Google scholar, he has 11450 citations, H-index 58.

Floris Wuyts and his team conducted in the early 2000’s a study for NASA to investigate pharmaceutical countermeasures against space motion sickness and later on several investigated Russian cosmonauts and ESA astronauts before and after spaceflight. Up to date (2020), he and his team tested 71% of all Russian Cosmonauts that resided for 6 months in the ISS. His research team was the first to publish on the impact of space on the human brain using magnetic resonance imaging methods.

Dr Carole Dangoisse

Dr Carole Dangoisse will be presenting from 10:00-11:00 (GMT) on Sunday 7th February.

Carole is a doctor in Critical Care Medicine, currently training in Anaesthetics and Pre-Hospital Medicine.  She is undertaking a Master in Extreme Medicine with the University of Exeter/WEM.  She winter-overed as the European Space Agency Research MD at Concordia Station in Antarctica in 2017.  She is passionate about space and science fiction but has also lived in many countries and trekked all over our beautiful Earth.


Space Technologies Presentations

The Space Technologies Workshop will take place from 11:00-12:00 (GMT) on both Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th February.

Work in groups over 24 hours to come up with a 5-10 minute presentation on your favourite healthcare technology that was originally developed to be used in space! We’ll have an all-star panel choosing a winner – there might even be a prize or two involved… 😉

Train Like an Astronaut

The Train Like an Astronaut Workshop will take place from 16:30-17:30 (GMT) on Saturday 6th February.

This past year has been a trying time for most of us, but it’s also the closest some of us have been to experiencing what astronauts live through on the ISS. We have been confined and isolated from our loved ones and haven’t been able to exercise like we usually do. This 25-minute High Intensity Interval workout has been designed to show you how much you can do with just an exercise mat and some motivation! While we get a sweat on, I’ll talk through some of the exercise astronauts can and can’t do on the ISS for the first half and then we’ll learn about astronaut rehab back on earth.

Eat Like an Astronaut

The Eat Like an Astronaut Workshop will take place from 12:30-13:00 (GMT) on Sunday 7th February.

Space food doesn’t have the best rep for flavours, but it is a huge part of space medicine and keeping the astronauts both happy and healthy! During this workshop you’re welcome to cook along with me or just listen in to some fun facts and research based around nutrition in space. We’ll send out the ingredients ahead of time so strap in (or don’t if you’re in zero G) for a unique conference lunch break.


You can hear from all of the organisations listed here at our Organisations Session, 14:30-16:00 (GMT) on Sunday 7th February.


SELGRA is the student chapter of the European Low Gravity Research Association. Our main goal is to be the point of reference for students interested in gravity-related research all over Europe.

SELGRA works hard to organize and support outreach activities as well as to help its members to present and promote their research, for instance via conference grants. As a network of students with the same interests, it is also the perfect place for you to find team members for one of your gravity-related projects.

To get updated about the new opportunities in gravity related research, don’t hesitate to join SELGRA (membership is free).


The UK Space Life and Biomedical Sciences Association exists to improve communication, cooperation and collaboration (C3) between UK based organisations and individuals involved or interested in research, healthcare, outreach and educational activities related to space life and biomedical sciences and the human element of human spaceflight.


The Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) in Support of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications is a global non-governmental, non-profit organisation and network which aims to represent university students and young space professionals (18-35 y.o.) to the United Nations, space agencies, industry, and academia. SGAC represents 15,000 members from over 150 countries worldwide, and holds permanent observer status at the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS). For more information about SGAC, please visit our website: or contact

The Space Medicine and Life Sciences (SMLS) Project Group is SGAC core group of members and experts aiming to provide an international, intercultural and interdisciplinary platform for young professionals with an interest in space biomedical science. SMLS was informally founded in June 2018, ahead of UNISPACE+50, to provide a forum for students and young professionals to discuss the contributions of Space to Global Health and Medicine. The Project Group was formally launched thereafter and members have been invited – and have contributed – to the activities of the UN COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee (STSC)’s Working Group on Space and Global Health. For more information about the Project group, visit or contact us at

Next Generation of Aerospace Medicine (NGAM)

The Next Generation of Aerospace Medicine (NGAM) is a group specifically built for students and early career professionals across the wide multi-disciplinary field of aerospace medicine. It was founded by UK Speciality Registrars (StRs) in Aviation & Space Medicine to fill the gap in reliable, UK specific information about for those interested in building interest or a career in the medical speciality of wider field. Working alongside the Royal Aeronautical Society Aerospace Medicine Group, NGAM has links to the major UK Aerospace Medicine organisations and practioners, helping to provide access to expert mentors and up-to-date resources.

Our aims at NGAM are:

  1. To raise awareness of the speciality of Aviation and Space Medicine (ASM) and the wide interdisciplinary fields involved in aerospace medicine in the UK.
  2. To promote opportunities to learn about and get involved in the field of aerospace medicine. This will be through provision of information about aerospace medicine to members via FAQs, social media, podcasts/blogs, online tutorials and notification of conferences and events.
  3. To provide mentoring to students and professionals interested in starting or developing a career in aerospace medicine and to support networking opportunities.
  4. To act as a coordination hub for the multiple organisations that are working to raise the profile of aerospace medicine around the UK and to link with equivalent international organisations.
  5. To provide topic suggestions for possible research, audit and quality improvement projects by students and young professionals and improve the coordination of such efforts.
  6. To encourage and embrace diversity in the field by improving access for under-represented groups.
  7. To develop future leaders in aerospace medicine.

To get involved visit our website (with bios, tutorials, useful links and info) at, follow us on Twitter @NextGenAsM or send an email to to join our mailing list.

Womxn in Aerospace Medicine (WAM)

WAM is a diverse subsection that is part of the Aerospace Medical Students and Residents Organization (AMSRO) section of the Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA). We strive to provide opportunities for our members to engage with inspiring speakers who have unique perspectives from different areas of aerospace medicine, to support our members in achieving their goals, and to create a network of mentorship for members at all stages of their career from grade school through college, grad school, medical school, residency, and beyond. We are always looking to give people the chance to learn and take leadership roles to meet their professional and academic goals.

UK Space Agency

The UK Space Agency leads the UK’s efforts to explore and benefit from space, with responsibility for all strategic decisions on the UK civil space programme. It ensures Government investments in space science and technology deliver significant value to the UK economy and people’s lives. As set out in the Industrial Strategy, the UK Space Agency works with industry to develop new technologies, infrastructure and services, and to ensure the UK thrives in the commercial space age.

The UK Space Agency:

  • Supports the work of the UK space sector at home and abroad, maximising its benefit to the UK’s growing economy
  • Invests in science and exploration to increase our understanding of the universe and deliver practical benefits such as new technologies to life on Earth
  • Inspires the next generation of UK scientists and engineers
  • Provides a safe and supportive regulatory environment for the launch and operation of UK spacecraft, launch operators and UK spaceports
  • Promotes global co-operation in space, through the UK’s membership of the European Space Agency and international partnerships

The UK Space Agency is an executive agency, sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. You can follow us on social media at @spacegovuk on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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