Genetic Effects of Radiation Exposure in Amfibia Populations of the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone

Period: since 2007

Customer: Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF), USA

The main objective of the research proposed is to assess and compare a rate of generative mutations among the population of moor frog [ Rana terrestris ] within the contaminated and test sites. The rate of generative mutations will be assessed among the descendents of moor frog breeding couples based on high mutable genetic markers, microsatellites.

The project will be the first research of genetic effects resulting from the exposure of amphibian population within the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone to radiation. The obtained data will fill up the gaps in knowledge of biological effects appearing in case of chronic ionizing radiation impact on natural populations. The data on generative mutations among the contaminated amphibian populations will be useful while assessing ecological risks within the territory and may help to explain decreases of amphibian population in other parts of the world. Development of these methods will be directly applicable to research of other organisms and areas.

Results of the project will be useful both for other researchers and the local executive bodies dealing with assessment of ecological risks produced by radiation exposure effects and with the risks forecasting. Collaborators will gain new experience in the state-of-the-art molecular genetic methods that may be applied to various organisms and ambient media.

Contact:
Director of International Radioecology Laboratory
Mykhailo D. Bondarkov
Tel: +38 (04579) 2 44 88
Fax: +38 (04579) 6 15 62
e-mail: bondarkov@chornobyl.net