GEOCHEMICAL ECOLOGY — the section of biogeochemistry and ecology studying interaction of organisms and their communities with the geochemical environment in the biosphere as uniform system of organisms and Wednesday. G.'s problem e. studying of processes of concoction is organisms of chemical elements and examination biol, reactions of organisms in response to action of natural or technogenic chemical conditions of the environment, disclosure of their biochemical, and genetic mechanisms, establishment of causal relationships between reactions of organisms and geochemical factors of the environment, a research of a role of organisms, their biomass in change of chemical properties of the environment.
e. resolves private issues of patterns of geochemical mosaicity of the biosphere as environments of life and variability of chemical elementary structure of organisms under the influence of the geochemical environment and evolution of organisms. The biogeochemical food chains showing ways of migration of chemical elements in the biosphere and connecting organisms with the geochemical environment of their dwelling are studied. One of the main questions interesting G. e — studying of patterns biol, reactions of organisms in response to various levels of natural or technogenic contents in the environment of chemical elements. Essential section G. e. also definition of threshold concentration of chemical elements in soils, sterns, foodstuff and diets within which there is a normal regulation of processes of a metabolism in organisms is. The local diseases of plants, animals and the person caused by a lack or surplus of the environment and a diet of chemical elements also enter a circle of questions G. e. Scientific justification of norms mineral and a microelement-nogo of food of plants, animals and the person, the prevention and treatment of some local diseases of plants, animals and the person — all this enters G.'s problems e.
Example of practical use of methods G. e. successful studying of influence of microelements on synthesis of biologically active compounds can serve in medicinal plants, in an organism of animals and the person. It was established by studying of plants in conditions with various contents in the environment of microelements that copper influences formation of flavonoids (sort Fagopyrum), manganese and cobalt — the content of alkaloids of a tropane row (sort Atropa), manganese and molybdenum — the content of cardiac glycosides (sort Digitalis), etc. At animals at a lack of the environment of cobalt synthesis of B12 vitamin is broken by microflora of a digestive tract. In areas, scarce on cobalt and iodine, more frequent disease of people of a local craw, than in areas, scarce only on iodine etc. is noted (see. Biogeochemical division into districts ).
Establishment of the reasons of such endemiya — G.'s merit e., edges is one of the disciplines which are most closely connected with medicine. These issues are resolved taking into account methods and achievements of other sciences — morphology, physiology, biochemistry and genetics at various levels of the organization of living matter — from organisms and their communities to molecular level.
e. arose and developed in the Soviet Union as the independent direction of biogeochemistry and ecology in the middle of 20 century.
The central establishment developing problems G. e., the Biogeochemical laboratory Ying-that geochemistry and analytical chemistry of V. I. Vernadsky is Academy of Sciences of the USSR. Researches in the area G. e. are carried out in many in-ta and laboratories of the country. The special publication, in Krom takes up questions G. e., Works of Biogeochemical laboratory Academy of Sciences of the USSR are.
Researches in the area G. e. are conducted in various countries — Great Britain (Aberdeen, Makleevsky in-t; London, College of science and technology), France (Scientific center in Clermont-Ferrand; Paris, Agricultural academy), Hungary (Budapest, Un-t of veterinary medicine), Canada (Un-t of British Columbia) etc.
Bibliography: Kovalsky V. V. Geochemical ecology, M., 1974, bibliogr.; About d at m Yu. Fundamentals of ecology, the lane with English, M., 1975; Works of Biogeochemical laboratory Academy of Sciences of the USSR, t. 11 — 13, M., 1960 — 1973; Trace element metabolism in animals — 2, Proc. 2-nd Int. Symp., Baltimore, 1974.
V. V. Kovalsky.