Chronic radiation exposure as an ecological factor: Hypermethylation and genetic differentiation in irradiated Scots pine populations

P.Yu Volkova, Stanislav Geras’kin, Nele Horemans, E.S. Makarenko, Eline Saenen, G.T. Duarte, Robin Nauts, V.S. Bondarenko, G. Jacobs, Stefan Voorspoels, M. Kudin

    Research outputpeer-review


    Genetic and epigenetic changes were investigated in chronically irradiated Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) populations from territories that were heavily contaminated by radionuclides as result of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant accident. In comparison to the reference site, the genetic diversity revealed by electrophoretic mobility of AFLPs was found to be significantly higher at the radioactively contaminated areas. In addition, the genome of pine trees was significantly hypermethylated at 4 of the 7 affected sites.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)105e112
    Number of pages8
    JournalEnvironmental Pollution
    StatePublished - 1 Jan 2018

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