Dynamics of population mutagenesis during 22 consecutive generations of animals, as well as genetic radioadaptation were studied in natural populations of small mammals (bank voles) under chronic low‐intensive irradiation due to the Chernobyl accident. The data obtained point to oppositely directed processes in irradiated populations: accumulation of mutations (genetic load of populations) and formation of genetic radioadaptation. It is suggested that the frequencies of genetic damages in populations could be higher in the absence of radioadaptation process. A relationship between the frequencies of cytogenetic injuries and low doses of radiation was revealed in animal generations studied. The non‐linear dose‐effect curves are most likely to be defined by the complicated microevolutionary processes in populations. The results obtained indicate the absence of genetic effect threshold of low dose radiation. Besides, they show that a dependence of cytogenetic effects on radiation low doses in series of irradiated generations cannot be revealed using linear equations.
Ivanovna Ryabokon, N., Ivanovich Smolich, I. and Iosiphovna Goncharova, R. (2000), "Genetic processes in chronically irradiated populations of small mammals", Environmental Management and Health, Vol. 11 No. 5, pp. 433-446. https://doi.org/10.1108/09566160010378107
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