Health: The Times of Your Life

An underground study shows how internal clocks can go awry

Stefania Follini could be forgiven for losing track of time. On Jan. 13 the 27-year-old Italian interior designer descended into a cave near Carlsbad, N. Mex., where she was to live for more than four months as part of an experiment aimed at examining how the stresses of long-term isolation could affect space $ travel. Pioneer Frontier Explorations, an Italian research foundation, had selected Follini, one of 20 volunteers for the assignment, because she was judged to have inner strength and stamina. For 131 days she dwelled alone in a 20-ft. by 12-ft. Plexiglas module sealed 30 ft. under the surface,...

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