1022-7954/03/3910- $25.00 © 2003
Russian Journal of Genetics, Vol. 39, No. 10, 2003, pp. 1161–1167. Translated from Genetika, Vol. 39, No. 10, 2003, pp. 1373–1380.
Original Russian Text Copyright © 2003 by Druzhinin.
Obviously, a study on genotoxic impacts on the pop-
ulation of a region characterized by diverse ecological
situations should be preceded by analysis of the main
quantitative parameters of chromosome aberration fre-
quency in the samples studied. The main result of this
stage is the estimation of the spontaneous chromosome
mutation rate in the region, which may serve as a refer-
ence point in the subsequent analysis of aberrations
caused by mutagenic factors . In addition, the analy-
sis of the quantitative characteristics of chromosome
damage at this stage permits the estimation of the pos-
sible modifying effects of other factors, such as sex,
age, and addictions (e.g., smoking).
The variation of the background frequency of chro-
mosome aberrations at the population level remains
poorly understood, particularly, in terms of the diverse
genotypic and paratypic factors that modify it. It is gen-
erally believed that contradictions between the data on
spontaneous chromosome aberration frequency
reported by different authors are largely determined by
the inefﬁcient general organization of studies on the
effects of various factors on this parameter. This prima-
rily concerns pooling of data obtained in different lab-
oratories without strict uniﬁcation of the methodology
for detecting and recording chromosome aberrations,
as well as the attempts to isolate and monitor only one
factor and exclude all others from consideration.
Recording all factors that can be monitored for a sufﬁ-
ciently long period of time in a large sample and
employing a uniﬁed methodology is a more adequate
 were the ﬁrst to implement
this approach when constructing a database of the
results of a 30-year cytogenetic survey and description
of a large sample from the populations of the European
part of Russia and the CIS.
Here, we present a structurally similar database con-
taining the results of a 15-year monitoring of chromo-
some aberrations in blood lymphocytes of subjects
from the Kemerovo oblast, a large industrial region of
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Description of the database.
The main task when
forming the database was to make it as consistent as
possible with the methodological principles described
in , because this would permit the comparison of the
main cytogenetic parameters.
The database consisted of three related tables, with
the number assigned to each subject examined being
the key ﬁeld of each table.
The ﬁrst table contained, besides the key ﬁeld, the
(1) Place of residence (city, town, or village, with
the district afﬁliation indicated).
(2) Chemical exposure. All subjects examined were
divided into ﬁve groups. The ﬁrst group comprised chil-
dren and adults that were not employed at industrial
enterprises and lived in settlements where there were no
or almost no chemical industry. The second group com-
prised children and adults that were not employed at
industrial enterprises and lived in miners’ cities and
towns. The third group comprised the same category of
Quantitative Characteristics of Chromosome
Aberration Frequency in the Human Population
of a Large Western Siberian Industrial Region
V. G. Druzhinin
Kemerovo State University, Kemerovo, 650043 Russia; fax: (3842)23-38-85; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Received October 3, 2002; in ﬁnal form, February 12, 2003
—The results of a 15-year study of chromosome aberration frequency in cultured peripheral blood
lymphocytes from subjects living in the Kuzbass industrial region are presented. The database for the analysis
of the main parameters of chromosome aberrations contains data on 925 subjects, with the total number of cells
examined being 92 900. It has been found that the total frequency of aberrant metaphases in the database is
0.1%, whereas this frequency for the sample of subjects from industrial areas of this region (the basic
control group) is signiﬁcantly lower (2.86
0.26%). It has been demonstrated that the sex and age of the sub-
jects do not affect substantially the frequency of any type of chromosome aberrations. Tobacco smoking is asso-
ciated with a slight increase in chromosome damage frequency; however, the difference between smokers and
nonsmokers is insigniﬁcant even among subjects exposed to occupational hazards. The possible causes that
have determined the increased basic and background chromosome aberration frequencies in the population of
the Kemerovo oblast compared to these parameters for the European part of Russia and the CIS are discussed.