1067-4136/05/3604- © 2005 Pleiades Publishing, Inc.
Russian Journal of Ecology, Vol. 36, No. 4, 2005, pp. 285–287. Translated from Ekologiya, No. 4, 2005, pp. 314–317.
Original Russian Text Copyright © 2005 by Ervandyan, Nebish, Simonyan, Arutyunyan.
Environmental pollution leads to changes in the
complexes of adaptive reactions established in the
course of evolution, and its genetic consequences are
responsible for the degradation of natural populations.
Analysis of trends in the responses of biological sys-
tems to the corresponding factors and interpretation of
the observed effects are of great scientiﬁc interest.
Moreover, they are indispensable for an adequate
assessment of the state of the environment (Geras’kin
, 1996), particularly in the regions of nuclear
power plants (Kal’chenko and Spirina, 1989; Butorina
, 2001). Due to speciﬁc features of the life cycle of
seed plants, their sporophyte generations do not retain
the genetic load (Constantin, 1984), as harmful muta-
tions are necessarily expressed or eliminated at the hap-
loid phase (Lyakh, 1995). Hence, analysis of the male
gametophyte generation is comparable to that of the
haploid chromosome set of microorganisms with
respect to efﬁciency and sensitivity. Along with con-
ventional methods for detecting mutations, this analy-
sis as an indirect approach has been used for the com-
parative assessment of environmental pollution
(Amano, 1981; Nilan, 1981; Kurinnyi, 1983; Constan-
tin, 1984; Plewa, 1984; Kurinnyi
The purpose of this study was to analyze the micro-
gametophyte in plants of the family Rosaceae Juss.
growing in the region of the Armenian Nuclear Power
Plant (ANPP) in order to estimate the state of this plant
system and choose the taxa suitable for their use in
We studied male microgametophytes (pollen grains)
of fruit trees collected at two sites: at the Experimental
Station of Yerevan State University in Noragyugh, approx-
imately 30 km away from the ANPP (control site 1), and
in the vicinity of the ANPP (site 2). The trees were as fol-
lows: apricot (cultivars Shalakh and Taparza), pear (cul-
tivars Malacha and Dzmernuk), peach (cultivar
Narindzh), apple (cultivar Demirchyan), sour cherry
(cultivar Shpanka and a common form), quince, and
cherry plum (10 samples, 20 variants). The age of trees
was 8–15 years. Microscopic analysis was performed
by conventional methods (Pausheva, 1988). In each
variant, approximately 10000 pollen grains stained
with acetocarmine were examined. Six samples were
analyzed repeatedly. Numerical data were processed
statistically (Plokhinskii, 1978). A brief description of
the study region is given below.
Armenia occupies the highest part of the Armenian
Upland, where the average annual temperatures range
from 4 to 11
C, climatic conditions and soil types are
diverse, and 11 agroclimatic zones are distinguished.
One of them is the Ararat Plain, the region of our study.
This is the “lowland” part of the republic (elevations
800–1000 m above sea level) characterized by a dry
continental climate with the highest annual average
C in July and –4 to –6
C in Janu-
ary) and the lowest annual average precipitation (200–
305 mm). Brown and semidesert soils with characteris-
tic vegetation prevail. In irrigated areas, however, the
soil is fertile and productive, especially for viticulture
and fruit growing.
The plants used in the study differed in the dates of
onset and duration of blossoming, and this created
some difﬁculties in collecting the material. In this con-
text, we divided them into three groups: plants with
early and short-term blossoming (in March, at 4–5
for approximately seven days); plants with relatively
late and long-term blossoming (in May, at approxi-
C, for more than 14 days); and plants with
intermediate parameters (blossoming in April, at
C). The apricot was included in the ﬁrst group; the
quince and apple, in the second group; and the remain-
ing plants, in the third group. During the study period,
an early spring with blossoming in early March was
recorded in 1999, and a late spring with blossoming in
early April was recorded in 2000.
The results shown in Figs. 1 and 2 provide evidence
for a broad variation in the quality of pollen grain in
individual species and cultivars of fruit trees. The data
on peach cultivars are illustrative in this respect. In the
Analysis of Microgametophyte in Plants
of the Family Rosaceae Juss for Biological Indication
of the State of Environment in Armenia
S. G. Ervandyan, A. A. Nebish, E. G. Simonyan, and R. M. Arutyunyan
Yerevan State University,
ul. Aleka Manukyana 1, Yerevan, 375025 Armenia
Received February 24, 2004
: male gametophyte, biological indication, pollen grain, sterility, fertility, genotype.