From Big Medical Encyclopedia

BIOGEOCHEMISTRY — the section of natural sciences studying a role of live organisms in geochemical processes in the biosphere and the geochemical environment in development of life.

B. considers questions of migration and distribution of chemical elements in to the biosphere (see) from the point of view of unity of the inorganic and organic nature. B. studies causal dependences of life on natural chemical conditions of the environment (at various levels of the organization of living matter); biological responses of organisms (change of morphology and a metabolism) on a shortcoming or surplus in the environment of certain chemical elements, and also their mutagen action, influence on heterogeneity of populations and their evolution. Geochemical processes in which live organisms participate, are still a little studied. In B. distinguish: geochemistry of the environment of life (maintenance and migration of various chemical elements, including microelements and their connections in pedogenic breeds, soils, the hydrosphere, the atmosphere); biogeochemistry of life (processes of concoction, migration and the maintenance of chemical elements and their connections in microorganisms, plants and animals); geochemical ecology (see); a role of the geochemical environment in evolution of organisms. B.'s achievements find the embodiment in economic life of the country (see. Biogeochemical provinces , Biogeochemical division into districts ).

Development of theoretical questions of biogeochemistry in many cases is connected also with the solution of practical tasks (definition of requirement of plants and animals in microelements, establishment of communication of factors of the geochemical environment with prevalence of local diseases; justification of additives in fertilizers and diets of animal microelements for the purpose of the prevention of local diseases, increases in productivity and imunnobiologichesky properties of an organism etc.).

Original positions of B. are formulated and developed by V. I. Vernadsky (1863 — 1945) and further are developed by his pupils and followers: A. P. Vinogradov (a concept about biogeochemical provinces and about elementary structure of organisms of the sea); Ya. V. Samoylov (paleobiochemistry); V. V. Kovalsky (geochemical ecology and its molecular bases, biogeochemical division into districts); D. P. Malyuga (biogeochemical method of searches of fossil ores); S. M. Manskoy (organic geochemistry); S. V. Kuznetsov (microbiological processes in geochemistry), etc.

Questions B. are developed by many scientists of various countries: Bowen (H. J. M of Bowen) in England, Dyuvinyo and Tangy (P. Duvigneaud, M. Tanghe) in Belgium, Kamen and Hutchinson (M. of Kamen, G. Hutchinson) in the USA, etc.

The main center for studying of problems B. in the USSR is the Biogeochemical laboratory Academy of Sciences of the USSR created by V. I. Vernadsky in 1929 (on the basis of the Department of living material created by it). The biogeochemical laboratory works in contact with many institutions of the country studying questions B. «Works of Biogeochemical laboratory Academy of Sciences of the USSR» are published (vol. I-XIV, 1930-1974). The main questions B. were discussed on biogeochemical sections of the international biochemical and geochemical congresses (the USSR, Japan), on the International symposiums «Exchange of microelements at animals» (1969, England; 1973, the USA), all-Union meetings on microelements, at the first All-Union conference «Microelements in Medicine», etc.

Bibliography: Vernadsky V. I. Biogeochemical sketches of 1922 — 1932, M. — JI., 1940; about N e, Chemical constitution of the biosphere of Earth and its environment, M., 1965; it, Biosphere, M., 1967; Vinogradov A. P. Chemical elementary composition of organisms and periodic system of D. I. Mendeleyev, Works Biogeo-chemical laborat. Academy of Sciences of the USSR, t. 3, page 5, JI. — M, 1935; it, Chemical elementary composition of organisms of the sea, in the same place, t. 3, page 63, t. 4, page 5, M. — L., 1937, t. 6, page 5, M. — L., 1944, bibliogr.; it, Biogeochemical provinces and endemia, Dokl. Academy of Sciences of the USSR, t. 18, No. 4-5, page 283, 1938; Kovalsky V. V. Geochemical ecology, M., 1974; To about in and l with to and y V. V. iandrianovag. A. Microelements in soils of the USSR, M., 1970; Kovalsky V. V. and Letunova S. V. Biogeokhimiya, in book: Development biol, in the USSR, under the editorship of B. E. Bykhovsky, page 642, M., 1967; Smiths S. I., Ivanov M. V. and Lyalikova H. H. Introduction to geological microbiology, M., 1962; Bowen H. J. M of Trace elements in biochemistry, N. Y., 1966; Underwood E. J. Trace elements in human and animal nutrition, N. Y. — L., 1971.

V. V. Kovalsky.