Astronauts are some of the bravest men and women on the face of the planet, but the first crew to venture past the Moon and head all the way to Mars will be pioneers of an entirely variety.

They’ll also be at a potentially extreme risk of a variety of ailments that comes with such a journey, including an increased probability of cancer due to radiation from space. A new proposal could change that, with NASA considering the possibility of actually modifying the DNA of Mars travelers in order to make their bodies more resilient to the dangers of the trip.

Dr. Douglas Terrier, NASA’s acting Chief Technologist, reportedly spoke about the possibility of tweaking the DNA of Mars astronauts during a recent event in London.

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