chernobyl nuclear accident


Summary: April 25th -26th, 1986 nuclear power accident that occurred at Chernobyl in the former USSR (Ukraine) located 80 miles north of Kiev.

Top Publications

  1. Spirichev V, Donchenko G, Blazheevich N, Parkhomenko I, Aleĭnik S, Golubkina N, et al. [To the 20th anniversary of the Chornobyl accident study of vitamin status and provision with micro- and macroelements of limited groups of people at different time periods since the accident at Chornobyl nuclear power plant]. Ukr Biokhim Zh (1999). 2006;78:5-26 pubmed
  2. Cardis E, Howe G, Ron E, Bebeshko V, Bogdanova T, Bouville A, et al. Cancer consequences of the Chernobyl accident: 20 years on. J Radiol Prot. 2006;26:127-40 pubmed
  3. Zablotska L, Bogdanova T, Ron E, Epstein O, Robbins J, Likhtarev I, et al. A cohort study of thyroid cancer and other thyroid diseases after the Chornobyl accident: dose-response analysis of thyroid follicular adenomas detected during first screening in Ukraine (1998-2000). Am J Epidemiol. 2008;167:305-12 pubmed
    ..Compared with results from other studies, this estimate is somewhat smaller, but confidence intervals overlap, suggesting compatibility. ..
  4. Ivanov V. Late cancer and noncancer risks among Chernobyl emergency workers of Russia. Health Phys. 2007;93:470-9 pubmed
    ..64; 3.69). Different but overlapping cohorts of Russian emergency workers were used for these estimations. No adjustments were made for recognized risk factors for cerebrovascular diseases. All results should be considered as preliminary...
  5. Ron E. Thyroid cancer incidence among people living in areas contaminated by radiation from the Chernobyl accident. Health Phys. 2007;93:502-11 pubmed
    ..Since considerable uncertainties about the long-term health effects from Chernobyl remain, continued follow-up of the exposed populations should provide valuable information...
  6. Yablokov A. 2. Chernobyl's public health consequences. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:32-41 pubmed publisher
    ..g., stable chromosomal aberrations), as well as other genetic and nongenetic pathologies. ..
  7. Danchenko M, Skultety L, Rashydov N, Berezhna V, Mátel L, Salaj T, et al. Proteomic analysis of mature soybean seeds from the Chernobyl area suggests plant adaptation to the contaminated environment. J Proteome Res. 2009;8:2915-22 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results suggest that adaptation toward heavy metal stress, protection against radiation damage, and mobilization of seed storage proteins are involved in plant adaptation mechanism to radioactivity in the Chernobyl region...
  8. Geras kin S, Fesenko S, Alexakhin R. Effects of non-human species irradiation after the Chernobyl NPP accident. Environ Int. 2008;34:880-97 pubmed publisher
    ..Based on the Chernobyl NPP accident studies, in the present review attempts were made to assess minimum doses at which ecological and biological effects were observed. ..
  9. Ostroumova E, Brenner A, Oliynyk V, McConnell R, Robbins J, Terekhova G, et al. Subclinical hypothyroidism after radioiodine exposure: Ukrainian-American cohort study of thyroid cancer and other thyroid diseases after the Chornobyl accident (1998-2000). Environ Health Perspect. 2009;117:745-50 pubmed publisher
    ..Prospective data are needed to evaluate the dynamics of radiation-related hypothyroidism and clarify the role of antithyroid antibodies. ..

More Information


  1. Yablokov A, Nesterenko V. 1. Chernobyl contamination through time and space. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:5-30 pubmed publisher
  2. Detours V, Delys L, Libert F, Weiss Solís D, Bogdanova T, Dumont J, et al. Genome-wide gene expression profiling suggests distinct radiation susceptibilities in sporadic and post-Chernobyl papillary thyroid cancers. Br J Cancer. 2007;97:818-25 pubmed
    ..These signatures in PTCs could reflect the susceptibility profiles of the patients, suggesting the feasibility of a radiation susceptibility test. ..
  3. Yablokov A. 5. Nonmalignant diseases after the Chernobyl catastrophe. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:58-160 pubmed publisher
    ..One cannot give credence to the explanation that these numbers are due solely to socioeconomic factors. The negative health consequences of the catastrophe are amply documented in this chapter and concern millions of people. ..
  4. Yablokov A. 9. Chernobyl's radioactive impact on flora. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:237-54 pubmed publisher
    ..Chernobyl's irradiation has led to genetic disorders, sometimes continuing for many years, and it appears that it has awakened genes that have been silent over a long evolutionary time. ..
  5. Møller A, Mousseau T, Lynn C, Lynnn C, Ostermiller S, Rudolfsen G. Impaired swimming behaviour and morphology of sperm from barn swallows Hirundo rustica in Chernobyl. Mutat Res. 2008;650:210-6 pubmed publisher
    ..These results are consistent with the hypothesis that sperm behaviour and morphology have been affected by radiation due to the Chernobyl accident...
  6. Vornam B, Arkhipov A, Finkeldey R. Nucleotide diversity and gene expression of Catalase and Glutathione peroxidase in irradiated Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) from the Chernobyl exclusion zone. J Environ Radioact. 2012;106:20-6 pubmed publisher
    ..The expression profiles of Cat and GPx in acutely and chronically and in chronically irradiated trees were similar. Compared to their corresponding control collectives, Cat was up-regulated and GPx slightly down-regulated...
  7. Hess J, Thomas G, Braselmann H, Bauer V, Bogdanova T, Wienberg J, et al. Gain of chromosome band 7q11 in papillary thyroid carcinomas of young patients is associated with exposure to low-dose irradiation. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011;108:9595-600 pubmed publisher
  8. Brenner A, Tronko M, Hatch M, Bogdanova T, Oliynik V, Lubin J, et al. I-131 dose response for incident thyroid cancers in Ukraine related to the Chornobyl accident. Environ Health Perspect. 2011;119:933-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Current knowledge about Chornobyl-related thyroid cancer risks comes from ecological studies based on grouped doses, case-control studies, and studies of prevalent cancers...
  9. Kesminiene A, Evrard A, Ivanov V, Malakhova I, Kurtinaitis J, Stengrevics A, et al. Risk of hematological malignancies among Chernobyl liquidators. Radiat Res. 2008;170:721-35 pubmed publisher
    ..Although sensitivity analyses showed generally similar results, we cannot rule out the possibility that biases and uncertainties could have led to over- or underestimation of the risk in this study. ..
  10. Heiervang K, Mednick S, Sundet K, Rund B. Effect of low dose ionizing radiation exposure in utero on cognitive function in adolescence. Scand J Psychol. 2010;51:210-5 pubmed publisher
  11. Yablokov A. 11. Chernobyl's radioactive impact on microbial biota. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:281-4 pubmed publisher
    ..Compared to humans and other mammals, the profound changes that take place among these small live organisms with rapid reproductive turnover do not bode well for the health and survival of other species. ..
  12. Stepanova E, Karmaus W, Naboka M, Vdovenko V, Mousseau T, Shestopalov V, et al. Exposure from the Chernobyl accident had adverse effects on erythrocytes, leukocytes, and, platelets in children in the Narodichesky region, Ukraine: a 6-year follow-up study. Environ Health. 2008;7:21 pubmed publisher
    After the Chernobyl nuclear accident on April 26, 1986, all children in the contaminated territory of the Narodichesky region, Zhitomir Oblast, Ukraine, were obliged to participate in a yearly medical examination...
  13. Romanenko A, Bebeshko V, Hatch M, Bazyka D, Finch S, Dyagil I, et al. The Ukrainian-American study of leukemia and related disorders among Chornobyl cleanup workers from Ukraine: I. Study methods. Radiat Res. 2008;170:691-7 pubmed publisher
    ..As background, we describe herein the design, procedures, outcome of case finding and confirmation, control selection, dose estimation and interviewing of subjects. ..
  14. Takahashi M, Saenko V, Rogounovitch T, Kawaguchi T, Drozd V, Takigawa Imamura H, et al. The FOXE1 locus is a major genetic determinant for radiation-related thyroid carcinoma in Chernobyl. Hum Mol Genet. 2010;19:2516-23 pubmed publisher
  15. Scherb H, Voigt K. The human sex odds at birth after the atmospheric atomic bomb tests, after Chernobyl, and in the vicinity of nuclear facilities. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2011;18:697-707 pubmed publisher
    ..The birth sex odds near nuclear facilities are also distorted. The persistently disturbed secular human sex odds trends allow the estimation of the global deficit of births in the range of several millions. ..
  16. Kuchma O, Vornam B, Finkeldey R. Mutation rates in scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) from the Chernobyl exclusion zone evaluated with amplified fragment-length polymorphisms (AFLPs) and microsatellite markers. Mutat Res. 2011;725:29-35 pubmed publisher
  17. Ugolin N, Ory C, Lefèvre E, Benhabilès N, Hofman P, Schlumberger M, et al. Strategy to find molecular signatures in a small series of rare cancers: validation for radiation-induced breast and thyroid tumors. PLoS ONE. 2011;6:e23581 pubmed publisher
  18. Krämer W. The human sex odds at birth after the atmospheric atomic bomb tests, after Chernobyl, and in the vicinity of nuclear facilities: comment. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2012;19:1332-4 pubmed publisher
    ..In particular, the concept of statistical "significance" and its limitations do not seem to be fully understood, and important confounding factors have not been accounted for. ..
  19. Czirják G, Møller A, Mousseau T, Heeb P. Microorganisms associated with feathers of barn swallows in radioactively contaminated areas around chernobyl. Microb Ecol. 2010;60:373-80 pubmed publisher
    ..These data lead us to conclude that the ecological effects of Chernobyl may be more general than previously assumed and may have long-term implications for host-microbe interactions and overall ecosystem functioning...
  20. Drozdovitch V, Minenko V, Khrouch V, Leshcheva S, Gavrilin Y, Khrutchinsky A, et al. Thyroid dose estimates for a cohort of Belarusian children exposed to radiation from the Chernobyl accident. Radiat Res. 2013;179:597-609 pubmed publisher
    ..5 mGy to almost 33 Gy; the mean was estimated to be 0.58 Gy, while the median was 0.23 Gy. The reconstructed doses are being used to evaluate the risk of thyroid cancer and other thyroid diseases in the cohort. ..
  21. Svendsen E, Kolpakov I, Stepanova Y, Vdovenko V, Naboka M, Mousseau T, et al. 137Cesium exposure and spirometry measures in Ukrainian children affected by the Chernobyl nuclear incident. Environ Health Perspect. 2010;118:720-5 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings are unique and suggest significant airway obstruction and restriction consequences for children chronically exposed to low-dose radioactive contaminants such as those found downwind of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. ..
  22. Nesterenko A, Nesterenko V, Yablokov A. 12. Chernobyl's radioactive contamination of food and people. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:289-302 pubmed publisher
    ..Given that more than 90% of the current radiation fallout is due to Cs-137, with a half-life of about 30 years, we know that the contaminated areas will be dangerously radioactive for roughly the next three centuries. ..
  23. Sperling K, Neitzel H, Scherb H. Evidence for an increase in trisomy 21 (Down syndrome) in Europe after the Chernobyl reactor accident. Genet Epidemiol. 2012;36:48-55 pubmed publisher
  24. Møller A, Bonisoli Alquati A, Rudolfsen G, Mousseau T. Elevated mortality among birds in Chernobyl as judged from skewed age and sex ratios. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e35223 pubmed publisher
    ..Such skewed age ratios towards yearlings in contaminated areas are consistent with the hypothesis that an area exceeding 30,000 km(2) in Chernobyl's surroundings constitutes an ecological trap that causes dramatic excess mortality. ..
  25. Williams D. Radiation carcinogenesis: lessons from Chernobyl. Oncogene. 2008;27 Suppl 2:S9-18 pubmed publisher
    ..The type and molecular pathology of the thyroid tumors is changing with increasing latency, long latency tumors in other organs could occur in the future. A comprehensive follow up must continue for the lifetime of those exposed. ..
  26. Port M, Boltze C, Wang Y, Roper B, Meineke V, Abend M. A radiation-induced gene signature distinguishes post-Chernobyl from sporadic papillary thyroid cancers. Radiat Res. 2007;168:639-49 pubmed
    ..Seven genes were found that completely distinguished post-Chernobyl (PTC) from sporadic PTC. ..
  27. Gashchak S, Makliuk I, Maksimenko A, Maksimenko V, Martynenko V, Chizhevskiĭ I, et al. [The features of radioactive contamination of small birds in Chernobyl zone in 2003-2005]. Radiats Biol Radioecol. 2008;48:28-47 pubmed
    ..have noticeably higher accumulation of 90Sr and of 137Cs. Specific differences of radionuclides accumulation for the rest birds were not revealed due to small sample sizes of the species. ..
  28. Kryuchkov V, Chumak V, Maceika E, Anspaugh L, Cardis E, Bakhanova E, et al. Radrue method for reconstruction of external photon doses for Chernobyl liquidators in epidemiological studies. Health Phys. 2009;97:275-98 pubmed publisher
    ..The uncertainties, expressed in terms of geometric standard deviations, ranged from 1.1 to 5.8, with an arithmetic mean of 1.9. ..
  29. Stein L, Rothschild J, Luce J, Cowell J, Thomas G, Bogdanova T, et al. Copy number and gene expression alterations in radiation-induced papillary thyroid carcinoma from chernobyl pediatric patients. Thyroid. 2010;20:475-87 pubmed publisher
    ..We have used two high-throughput, whole genome platforms to analyze radiation-induced PTCs from pediatric patients from the Chernobyl region...
  30. Yablokov A. 10. Chernobyl's radioactive impact on fauna. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:255-80 pubmed publisher
  31. Williams E, Abrosimov A, Bogdanova T, Demidchik E, Ito M, LiVolsi V, et al. Morphologic characteristics of Chernobyl-related childhood papillary thyroid carcinomas are independent of radiation exposure but vary with iodine intake. Thyroid. 2008;18:847-52 pubmed publisher
    ..We speculate that dietary iodine levels may have wide implications in radiation-induced thyroid carcinogenesis, and that iodine deficiency could increase incidence, reduce latency, and influence tumor morphology and aggressiveness. ..
  32. Bouville A, Likhtarev I, Kovgan L, Minenko V, Shinkarev S, Drozdovitch V. Radiation dosimetry for highly contaminated Belarusian, Russian and Ukrainian populations, and for less contaminated populations in Europe. Health Phys. 2007;93:487-501 pubmed
    ..In other European countries, both the thyroid and the effective doses are, on average, much smaller. ..
  33. Agate L, Mariotti S, Elisei R, Mossa P, Pacini F, Molinaro E, et al. Thyroid autoantibodies and thyroid function in subjects exposed to Chernobyl fallout during childhood: evidence for a transient radiation-induced elevation of serum thyroid antibodies without an increase in thyroid autoimmune disease. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2008;93:2729-36 pubmed publisher
    ..Our data suggest that radioactive fallout elicited a transient autoimmune reaction, without triggering full-blown thyroid autoimmune disease. Longer observation periods are needed to exclude later effects. ..
  34. Cardis E, Hatch M. The Chernobyl accident--an epidemiological perspective. Clin Oncol (R Coll Radiol). 2011;23:251-60 pubmed publisher
    Twenty-five years have passed since radioactive releases from the Chernobyl nuclear accident led to the exposure of millions of people in Europe...
  35. Dighton J, Tugay T, Zhdanova N. Fungi and ionizing radiation from radionuclides. FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2008;281:109-20 pubmed publisher
    ..Using this recently acquired knowledge, we may be in a better position to suggest the use of fungi in bioremediation of radioactively contaminated sites and cleanup of industrial effluent. ..
  36. Romanenko A, Finch S, Hatch M, Lubin J, Bebeshko V, Bazyka D, et al. The Ukrainian-American study of leukemia and related disorders among Chornobyl cleanup workers from Ukraine: III. Radiation risks. Radiat Res. 2008;170:711-20 pubmed publisher
    ..09 per Gy (95% CI < 0-14.41) and 2.73 per Gy (95% CI < 0-13.50), respectively]. To further clarify these issues, we are extending the case-control study to ascertain cases for another 6 years (2001-2006). ..
  37. Hatch M, Brenner A, Bogdanova T, Derevyanko A, Kuptsova N, Likhtarev I, et al. A screening study of thyroid cancer and other thyroid diseases among individuals exposed in utero to iodine-131 from Chernobyl fallout. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009;94:899-906 pubmed publisher
    ..We present here estimated risks of thyroid disease from exposure in utero to I-131 fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear accident. We conducted a cross-sectional thyroid screening study (palpation, ultrasound, thyroid hormones, and, ..
  38. Rumyantsev P, Saenko V, Ilyin A, Stepanenko V, Rumyantseva U, Abrosimov A, et al. Radiation exposure does not significantly contribute to the risk of recurrence of Chernobyl thyroid cancer. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2011;96:385-93 pubmed publisher
    ..Common treatment approaches for patients with PTC should be recommended regardless of a history of radiation exposure. ..
  39. Cardis E. Current status and epidemiological research needs for achieving a better understanding of the consequences of the Chernobyl accident. Health Phys. 2007;93:542-6 pubmed
    ..As such, they may have important consequences for the radiation protection of patients and of the general population in case of further nuclear emergencies. ..
  40. Møller A, Barnier F, Mousseau T. Ecosystems effects 25 years after Chernobyl: pollinators, fruit set and recruitment. Oecologia. 2012;170:1155-65 pubmed publisher
    ..The patterns at the level of trees were replicated at the level of villages across the study site. This study provides the first large-scale study of the effects of a suppressed pollinator community on ecosystem functioning. ..
  41. Abend M, Pfeiffer R, Ruf C, Hatch M, Bogdanova T, Tronko M, et al. Iodine-131 dose dependent gene expression in thyroid cancers and corresponding normal tissues following the Chernobyl accident. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e39103 pubmed publisher
    ..Our study is among the first to provide direct human data on long term differential gene expression in relation to individual I-131 doses and to identify a set of genes potentially important in radiation carcinogenesis. ..
  42. Maenhaut C, Detours V, Dom G, Handkiewicz Junak D, Oczko Wojciechowska M, Jarzab B. Gene expression profiles for radiation-induced thyroid cancer. Clin Oncol (R Coll Radiol). 2011;23:282-8 pubmed publisher
    ..Several lines of evidence suggest that the predisposition to developing cancer after radiation exposure is variable in the general population and may be measurable from gene expression. ..
  43. Hatch M, Furukawa K, Brenner A, Olinjyk V, Ron E, Zablotska L, et al. Prevalence of hyperthyroidism after exposure during childhood or adolescence to radioiodines from the chornobyl nuclear accident: dose-response results from the Ukrainian-American Cohort Study. Radiat Res. 2010;174:763-72 pubmed publisher
    ..In summary, after a thorough exploration of the data, we found no statistically significant dose-response relationship between individual (131)I thyroid doses and prevalent hyperthyroidism. ..
  44. Zablotska L, Ron E, Rozhko A, Hatch M, Polyanskaya O, Brenner A, et al. Thyroid cancer risk in Belarus among children and adolescents exposed to radioiodine after the Chornobyl accident. Br J Cancer. 2011;104:181-7 pubmed publisher
  45. Chumak V, Romanenko A, Voillequé P, Bakhanova E, Gudzenko N, Hatch M, et al. The Ukrainian-American study of leukemia and related disorders among Chornobyl cleanup workers from Ukraine: II. Estimation of bone marrow doses. Radiat Res. 2008;170:698-710 pubmed publisher
    ..These results should be treated as preliminary; it is likely that the dose calculations and particularly the uncertainty estimates will be improved in the follow-up of this effort. ..
  46. Møller A, Karadas F, Mousseau T. Antioxidants in eggs of great tits Parus major from Chernobyl and hatching success. J Comp Physiol B. 2008;178:735-43 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that radioactive contamination reduced levels of dietary antioxidants in yolks, with negative consequences for hatching success and reproductive success. ..
  47. Dom G, Tarabichi M, Unger K, Thomas G, Oczko Wojciechowska M, Bogdanova T, et al. A gene expression signature distinguishes normal tissues of sporadic and radiation-induced papillary thyroid carcinomas. Br J Cancer. 2012;107:994-1000 pubmed publisher
  48. Wertelecki W. Malformations in a chornobyl-impacted region. Pediatrics. 2010;125:e836-43 pubmed publisher
    ..Here the patterns and population rates of malformations are reported and possible etiologic factors and regional contrasts are explored...
  49. Møller A, Hagiwara A, Matsui S, Kasahara S, Kawatsu K, Nishiumi I, et al. Abundance of birds in Fukushima as judged from Chernobyl. Environ Pollut. 2012;164:36-9 pubmed publisher
  50. Zablotska L, Bazyka D, Lubin J, Gudzenko N, Little M, Hatch M, et al. Radiation and the risk of chronic lymphocytic and other leukemias among chornobyl cleanup workers. Environ Health Perspect. 2013;121:59-65 pubmed publisher
    ..Based on the primary analysis, we conclude that CLL and non-CLL are both radiosensitive. ..
  51. Yablokov A, Nesterenko V, Nesterenko A. 8. Atmospheric, water, and soil contamination after Chernobyl. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1181:223-36 pubmed publisher
    ..This transfer is one of the important mechanisms, observed in recent years, that leads to increased doses of internal irradiation among people in the contaminated territories. ..
  52. Galván I, Mousseau T, Møller A. Bird population declines due to radiation exposure at Chernobyl are stronger in species with pheomelanin-based coloration. Oecologia. 2011;165:827-35 pubmed publisher
  53. Jacob P, Bogdanova T, Buglova E, Chepurniy M, Demidchik Y, Gavrilin Y, et al. Thyroid cancer risk in areas of Ukraine and Belarus affected by the Chernobyl accident. Radiat Res. 2006;165:1-8 pubmed
    ..At the end of the observation period, excess risk estimates were found to be close to those observed in a major pooled analysis of seven studies of childhood thyroid cancer after external exposures. ..