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Tambov State University (Russia) scientists have increased the survival rate of seedlings to restore forests after fire

February 3, 2020

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Derzhavin Tambov State University has summed up the implementation of a major biotechnological project supported by the Federal Target Program. Scientists of the University in cooperation with colleagues from National University of Science and Technology MISIS and Voronezh State University of Forestry and Technologies named after G.F. Morozov  found a solution for the intensive restoration of forests after fires, using nanostructured preparations for microclonal propagation of woody plants.

In 2019 the economic damage from forest fires in Russia amounted to 14.4 billion rubles. During the fire hazard season in a number of Russian regions, fire covered over 10 million hectares of forest.

An effective way to quickly restore forest resources is to populate burned-out areas with seedlings grown in a specialized laboratory using the microclonal propagation method. However, during the adaptation of plants to soil, the probability of their death is high, which reduces the effectiveness of the technology. TSU scientists, based on existing developments in the field of creation and research of innovative growth stimulants and phytoimmunity of agricultural crops, have developed two technological regulations for producing preparations based on composite nanomaterials for stimulating and protecting microclonal seedlings of woody plants.

The total amount of funding for the work was 120 million rubles, of which 60 million was allocated under the Federal Target Program “Research and Development in Priority Directions for the Development of the Russian Science and Technology Complex for 2014-2020”. Co-financing was provided by the industrial partner and TSU.

- The use of innovative drugs made it possible to obtain seedlings of deciduous and coniferous trees with an increased survival rate of 10-28% in open ground. These seedlings were used to create experimental afforestation in the Voronezh region (Russia), - said Alexander Gusev, project manager, director of the TSU Ecology and Biotechnology Research Institute. - During the execution of the work, a significant number of theoretical and experimental scientific studies were conducted, which resulted in publishing seven articles in journals indexed in the international scientometric databases Web of Science and Scopus. Six patent applications have been filed, in relation to some of which a positive decision has already been made.