Ecological genetics

medical and biology peer-review journal publishes from 2003

English version Russian Journal of Genetics: Applied Research was published from 2011 to 2018

Since 2019 the journal publishes papers in Russian and English in parallel.


professor Sergei G. Inge-Vechtomov 


Journal mission

The journal Ecological genetics accepts for consideration original manuscripts that clarify all aspects of interactions between genetic and ecological processes on any types of organisms and on all levels of living system organization, from molecular to ecosystem one.


The editorial board accepts manuscripts that reflect the results of field and experimental studies, and fundamental research of broad conceptual and/or comparative context.

We welcome the publication of materials that:

  • make a significant contribution to the development of general biological theory and methodology of ecological and genetic research;
  • contribute to a better understanding of genetic mechanisms of the regulation of intra– and inter–species interactions of organisms, as well as ‘organism–environment’ interactions;
  • contribute to a better understanding of modern issues in general biology.

Publications of the journal would be of interest to a wide range of specialists in the fields of ecology, genetics, biochemistry, general biology, evolutionary theory, as well as for physicians and teachers and students of various biological and medical profiles.

The official languages of the journal are English and Russian. The English version of the article appears on the website three months after the publication of the Russian version.


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Vol 21, No 1 (2023)

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Genetic basis of ecosystems evolution

Inositol phosphates’ synthesis in pea Pisum sativum L. root seedlings at the early stages after Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae inoculation
Bovin A.D., Shirobokova S.A., Karakashev G.V., Dolgikh E.A.

Studying the role of inositol phosphates in the regulation of signal exchange between leguminous plants and nodule bacteria is of great interest since it affects the regulation of calcium level in the root cells in response to bacterial signals during symbiosis development. The regulation of intracellular calcium content is one of the key events in the control of symbiosis development, but remains very poorly understood. In present work, we revealed a significant increase in the content of inositol hexasphosphate (IP6), which occurs in response to the recognition of Nod factors and indicates that in plants, unlike animals, this form (along with the inositol triphosphate (IP3)) may be important for signal transduction. This is consistent with the data that receptor for IP3 in plants has not yet been found, despite numerous efforts.

Expression analysis of the genes encoding enzymes of two biosynthetic pathways for inositol phosphates showed stimulation of the PsITPK1 gene (Psat6g210960), which can control the phospholipid-independent pathway for synthesis of these compounds. Despite the fact that PsPIP5K (Psat5g134320) important for another pathway did not show increased expression in our experiments upon inoculation, the activation of the phospholipid-dependent pathway of inositol phosphate biosynthesis can be evidenced by stimulation of a number of genes encoding pospholipases C (PLCs) which were previously found in pea Pisum sativum as well as during analysis of transcriptome of Medicago truncatula root treated with Nod factors. Therefore, in plants, in contrast to animals, the pathways for the synthesis of inositol phosphates can be more diverse, which indicates the plasticity of signal pathways.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):5-17
pages 5-17 views
The productivity potential of some corn hybrids of the VIR collection for starch extraction during deep grain processing
Golgshtein V.G., Nosovskaya L.P., Adikaeva L.V., Bazgiev M.A., Badurgova K.S., Buzurtanov A.I., Khoreva V.I., Boyko V.N., Grushin A.A., Israfilova S.F., Fil I.V., Khatefov E.B.

BACKGROUND: The study of the VIR corn collection in order to search for economically valuable sources and donors is topical.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Studies of the biochemical components of grain during its deep processing were carried out on 27 hybrids from Germany, presented in the VIR collection. Valuable results have been obtained using the method of IR spectrometry and deep processing of grain in laboratory conditions, which make it possible to identify samples of interest for the production of native starch and its by-products.

RESULTS: The starch yield of more than 65% solids (% DM) grain dry matter is established for the following hybrids: KHV 7262, KHV 6431, KHV 6331, KHV 5440, Karpatis, DS 21209C, DS 21215B, DS 21212A, DS 21205B, DS 22188D. The maximum starch yield, more than 70% grain DM, is set for DS 21205B hybrids. The maximum yield of the embryo was set for the hybrid KHV 4126 up to 10% DM of the grain, the yield of starch during the processing of the grain of this hybrid was 61.2% DM. The highest yield of gluten, 18% or more, was established during the processing of hybrids DS 23190B and DS 21203B. The pulp yield of more than 15% CB was obtained by processing grain DS 22182C. Based on the results obtained, the following hybrids are proposed as the starting material for corn breeding for deep grain processing: KHV 7262, KHV 5440, DS 21209C, DS 21215B, DS 21212A, DS 21205B, DS 22188D.

CONCLUSIONS: Of greatest interest as a starting material is hybrid DS 21205B, during the processing of which starch was extracted in an amount of more than 70% grain DM.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):19-31
pages 19-31 views
Ecological genetics of beetles of the genus Adalia: restructuring of A. bipunctata populations as a global warming effect
Zakharov I.A., Rubanovich A.V.

The dynamics of the composition of the populations of Adalia bipunctata L. in St. Petersburg and Yalta (Crimean Peninsula) for 47–32 years has been studied. The proportion of black individuals in them decreased by almost 2 times. Comparison of the composition of populations with climatic features of habitats (average annual temperature) showed that the proportion of black individuals in the population negatively correlates with the average annual temperature of the previous year. The observed change in the composition of geographically remote populations is probably the effect of global warming.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):33-39
pages 33-39 views

Genetic toxicology

Evaluation of the genotoxic effect of tartrazine using a metabolic activation system in human lymphocyte culture under cytokinetic block conditions
Nikitina T.A., Konyashkina M.A., Ingel F.I., Akhaltseva L.V.

The expansion of the spectrum of use of food additives and, in particular, food dyes (FD), increases the risk of increasing human exposure to genotoxicants. Since in real life, not pure substances with proven genetic safety are in contact with a person, but complex mixtures of unknown composition, even minor impurities in which can become an additional source or modifier of genome instability effects. Of particular concern in this aspect are synthetic FD azo and diazo compounds which can be transformed by human intestinal microflora to some forms of genotoxicants. The purpose of the work is to evaluate the genotoxic effects of 0–2 mg/mL of Tartrazine FD (E102) purchased in a retail network in a micronucleus test on human blood cells cultured under cytokinetic block conditions in parallel in presence and without rat S9 hepatocyte metabolic activation system.

Genotoxic effects were found in cultures without metabolic activation at 0.0000256–0,00064 mg/mL and 0.4 mg/mL of tartrazine, and in the presence of S9 — at 0.0000256 mg/mL, 0,000128 mg/mL and 0.16 mg/mL of tartrazine. For the first time, a dose-dependent suppression of mitotic and proliferative activity of lymphocytes induced by the tested tartrazine sample was revealed, as well as a dose-dependent U-shaped curve in the frequency of apoptosis. The data obtained indicate the presence of genotoxic activity of the studied sample.

We discuss the necessity to create the system for evaluation the genotoxic safety of FD real mixtures from a retail network.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):41-51
pages 41-51 views
Modifying action of metformin on the cytogenetic effects of doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide in mice
Zhanataev A.K., Kulakova A.V., Durnev A.D.

BACKGROUND: The causal relationship between mutagenesis and carcinogenesis is well known. Hence the wide interest in the study of the mutagen-modifying effects of natural and synthetic compounds. Particular attention is drawn to widespread compounds. One of them, metformin, is widely used as a hypoglycemic drug.

AIM: evaluation of the influence of metformin on the cytogenetic effects of doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide in mouse bone marrow cells.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Male F1 CBAxC57Bl/6 hybrid mice were used. Cyclophosphamide (20 mg/kg) or doxorubicin (10 mg/kg) was administered intraperitoneally, metformin was given orally once or for 4 consecutive days. The latter administration of metformin was combined with mutagen administration. Cytogenetic preparations of bone marrow cells were prepared 18 hours after metformin administration and 24 hours after its combined administration with mutagens. Chromosomal aberrations were analyzed according to accepted protocols.

RESULTS: Metformin per se showed no cytogenetic activity at doses of 500, 1000, and 2000 mg/kg. At a dose of 500 mg/kg, but not 100 or 250 mg/kg, metformin reduced the cytogenetic effects of doxorubicin. Metformin administered once and for 4 days at doses of 100, 250, and 500 mg/kg or once at doses of 10 and 20 mg/kg increased the number of metaphases with chromosome aberrations induced by cyclophosphamide by a factor of 2 to 3. At doses of 2.5 and 5 mg/kg, metformin had no modifying effect on the mutagen effect.

CONCLUSION: Metformin attenuates the cytogenetic effects of doxorubicin and enhances the cytogenetic activity of cyclophosphamide in mouse bone marrow cells. This allows us to conclude that metformin has mutagen-modifying properties.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):53-60
pages 53-60 views

Human ecological genetics

Differential distribution of 5-formylcytosine and 5-carboxylcytosine in human spermatogenic cells and spermatozoa
Efimova O.A., Krapivin M.I., Parfenyev S.E., Mekina I.D., Komarova E.M., Ishchuk M.A., Tikhonov A.V., Kogan I.Y., Golubeva A.V., Daev E.V., Gzgzyan A.M., Bespalova O.N., Pendina A.A.

Background. The epigenome of gametes is formed under the control of the developmental programme and the influence of environmental factors. How cytosine oxidation patterns are formed and altered in human spermatogenesis remains obscure so far.

The aim of the study was to assess 5-formylcytosine (5fC) and 5-carboxylcytosine (5caC) patterns in human spermatogenic cells and spermatozoa.

Materials and Methods. The study was performed on testicular biopsy samples of 10 azoospermic patients and ejaculate samples of 5 sperm donors and 8 patients from infertile couples. The microscope slides were prepared for further indirect immunofluorescence to detect 5fC and 5caC and FISH to determine spermatogenic cell ploidy.   

Results. 5fC and 5caC were undetectable in mitotic and meiotic chromosomes of spermatogenic cells, and was present exclusively in some spermatogonia and spermatid interphase nuclei as well as in some ejaculated spermatozoa. The frequency of spermatozoa with 5fC and 5caC varied in a wide range and was higher in patients than in sperm donors (p=0,007, p=0,028). The increase in frequency of spermatozoa with 5fC and 5caC was accompanied with the decrease in frequency of morphologically normal and progressively motile spermatozoa.

Conclusions. 5fC and 5caC are differentially distributed in human spermatogenic cells and spermatozoa. The immunocytochemically detected increase of 5fC and 5caC in individual spermatozoa is most likely induced by oxidative stress caused by effects of internal and external factors rather than developmental programme. The evaluation of 5fC and 5caC in spermatozoa can be potentially used as an additional criterion of ejaculate quality.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):61-74
pages 61-74 views

Problems in genetic education

Terry buttercup wild flowers (Ranunculus acris) variability in school ecology education: ecocentrism formation
Daev E.V.

Variability of terry flowers in buttercup Ranunculus acris from different populations demonstrates the anthropogenic impact on the environment. Schoolchildren carried out training works analyzing the frequency of occurrence of the trait “double” of a buttercup flower in the populations of the North-West Region of Russia. The data obtained made it possible to discuss questions about the mechanisms of action of environmental pollution by surfactants and unsaturated hydrocarbons. The article emphasizes the importance: of the direct joint participation of schoolchildren and university professional teachers in environmental research; of the visibility, evidence and significance of their results; of competent comprehensive discussion for the formation of a bio- and ecocentric worldview. The latter is especially important for the tuition of qualified scientific staff in the field of ecological genetics.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):75-84
pages 75-84 views

Methodology in ecological genetics

Review of population history reconstruction methods in conservation biology
Totikov A.A., Tomarovsky A.A., Yakupova A.R., Graphodatsky A.S., Kliver S.F.

Demographic history reconstruction is based on the estimation of effective population size (Ne), which is inferred and interpreted in various fields of evolutionary and conservation biology. Interest in Ne estimation is growing, as the key evolutionary forces and their are linked to Ne, and genetic data become increasingly accessible. However, what is effective population size, and how can we obtain an estimate of effective population size? In this review, we describe the history of the term “Ne” and explore existing methods for obtaining historical and contemporary estimates of changes in effective population size. We provide a detailed overview of methods based on sequential Markovian coalescence (SMC), generalized phylogenetic coalescence (G-PhoCS), identity by descent (IBD) and identity by state (IBS) similarity, as well as methods using allele frequency spectrum (AFS). For each method, we briefly summarize the underlying theory and note its advantages and disadvantages. In the final section of the review, we present examples of the use of these methods for various non-model species with conservation status.

Ecological genetics. 2023;21(1):85-102
pages 85-102 views

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