Institute Cytology and Genetics

Ecological Genetics and Animal Gene Pool Laboratory

Head A.V.Kushnir, Dr.Biol.Sci.

ĀNative Yakutian horse

A Grey Ukrainian cow

European bison (auroch)

The research activities at the Laboratory are mainly concerned with study on the aboriginal species of farm and wild animals and their preservation.

At present, herds of gray Ukrainian cattle, aboriginal Yakutian horse, European bison, and Kulunda sheep are maintained at the experimental farms of the Siberian Department of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Shebalinsky region, the Cherga settlement, and in Iskitim.

Research is carried out aimed at studying the acclimatization features of animals to the conditions of West Siberia and Gorno Altai. The phenotypic and genotypic structure of aboriginal gray Ukrainian and Yakutian cattle are under study.

Studies have continued on the morphological and physiological mechanisms in adaptation to conditions of low temperature. In Yakutian aboriginal cattle, central neurology (the specificities of higher neurons activity) and the types of neural system have been investigated. It is intended to study stress tolerance in cattle.

The staff is doing research on the specificities of acclimatization (nutritional studies, feeding habits, digestion, biological features of development, molt, reproduction, ethology) in bison (auroch). Research on the genetic structure of Kulunda sheep has continued. This sheep breed is valued for its high quality meat, wood and pelt. One direction of the research is toward study of the microevolutionary processes in the gene pool of domestic populations of horse, sheep, pig, and other polytypical species.

An immunogenetic study on the gene pool of the ancient aboriginal Yakutian horse has been performed. A biological explanation is suggested for the divergence mechanisms of the horse types from the common gene pool of Yakutian horse.

Immunogenetic study on the Altai maral (Cervus elaphus sibiricus) demonstrated that genetic control of its origin, choice of desirable harems and an increase in pantocrinum production are feasible.

Many year study on Altai snowcock (Tetraogallus altaicus G.) is close to completion.

A method for producing Minisibs, Miniature Siberian Swine, for use in biology and medicine was developed at the Laboratory.