James Pattarini was accepted into the combined Aerospace Medicine/Internal Medicine residency program at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in March of 2010. Over his four years of training, he has contributed to several studies in commercial space flight research at UTMB as part of the FAA’s Center of Excellence in Commercial Space Transportation initiative. Over the past two years he has served as project co-investigator, focusing on the effects of chronic medical conditions on subject tolerance of acceleration forces mimicking suborbital space flight profiles.
His abstract entitled Preflight Screening Techniques for Centrifuge-Simulated Suborbital Spaceflight will be presented at the Aerospace Medical Association’s 85th annual scientific meeting in San Diego, CA and was selected for the 2014 AMSRO Scientific Paper Award. The screening procedures employed in this study were able to identify individuals physically capable of tolerating simulated suborbital flight from among several disease groups. Many subjects successfully participated in centrifuge trials despite medical histories of disease that would be disqualifying under historical spaceflight screening regimes, including coronary artery disease, diabetes, hypertension, pulmonary disease, and back and neck injury or disease. Such screening techniques are likely applicable for use in future commercial spaceflight operations and suggest that spaceflight may be physically tolerable for a large segment of the general population.
Dr. Pattarini is currently Chief Resident and Assistant Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at UTMB in Galveston, TX. His educational background includes a B.S. in Evolutional Biology from Syracuse University, an M.D. from the State University of New York at Buffalo, NY, and an M.P.H completed as a component of his aerospace medicine training at UTMB in 2013. James resides in Houston, TX with his wife, Harita, a short drive from Johnson Space Center.