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Home     Ukrainian Institutes Institute of Botany in Honor of M.G. Kholodny, NASU

Institute of Botany in Honor of M.G. Kholodny, NASU

Building of Institute of Botany

General Information

The history of the modern Institute of Botany began in September 1921, when A.V. Fomin founded and headed the institution that was called the “Botanical Chamber and Herbarium of the All- Ukrainian Academy of Sciences”. In 1922 it gave start to the Research Chair of Botany, which was subsequently transformed in 1927 into the Scientifi c Research Institute of Botany. In April 1931 that institute was merged with the Botanical Chamber and Herbarium to form the Institute of Botany of the All-Ukrainian Academy of Sciences, and it 1971 it was renamed after M.G. Kholodny, an outstanding Ukrainian scientist.

At least three separate institutions of the National Academy of Sciences were formed on the base of the Institute of Botany:

  • M.M. Gryshko National Botanical Garden.
  • Institute of Ecology of the Carpathians.
  • Institute of Cell Biology and Genetic Engineering.

There are nine scientifi c departments, the laboratory of nature conservation, and four auxiliary units. 132 scientists work at the Institute, including 2 members and 6 corresponding members of the National Academy, 31 doctors of biological sciences, and 80 candidates of biological sciences (PhDs).

In the Electron Microscopy Laboratory
In the Electron Microscopy Laboratory

Researchers of the Institute of Botany during field studies
Researchers of the Institute of Botany during
field studies

The main directions of research

  • Research in taxonomy and nomenclature of vascular plants of Ukraine and some plant groups of the global fl ora, fl oristic and phytogeographical studies, synanthropic fl oristics, paleopalynology and palynomorphology, and inventory of plant resources (especially medicinal plants).
  • Studies of plant communities and factors that determine their structure, dynamics and productivity; development of biological principles of the rational use and protection of natural vegetation, geobotanical mapping and studies of regional vegetation patterns.
  • Ecology of plants and plant communities, development of classifi cation of ecosystems and methods for assessing the impact of environmental factors on patterns of differentiation, structure and dynamics of vegetation; development of methods for assessment of energetic parameters of ecosystems; geobotanical and ecological mapping; Modelling and prediction for optimization and protection of ecosystems on the basis of thermodynamics.
  • Development of scientific recommendations for modes of biodiversity protection and conservation in Ukraine, scientifi c and methodological management of nature reserves and national nature parks, formation and development of the national ecological network.
  • Studies of fungal species diversity, taxonomy, geography, evolution and phylogeny of fungi and fungi-like organisms; monitoring of dynamics of the mycobiota in reserves and national nature parks; investigation of biological properties of higher edible and medicinal basidiomycetes for their further cultivation and biotechnological use for obtaining fruiting bodies and extraction of therapeutic and prophylactic dietary supplements and other biologically active substances.
  • Chorological and taxonomic studies of the species diversity of cyanoprokaryotes and algae in Ukraine and other countries and regions; morphological and taxonomic investigation of practically important algal taxa; morphological and populational studies of algae and their variability; radioecological studies of algae and fungi.
  • studies of taxonomic diversity of lichen-forming, lichenicolous and allied fungi, and bryophytes; assessment of the fl oristic diversity of symbiotic and free-living aerophytic algae and their ecological groups (communities) in some regions, using lichens as indicators of environmental conditions; critical revisions of selected taxa of cryptogamic plants and associated fungi.
  • Cellular and molecular mechanisms of phenotypic plasticity as a process of plant adaptation to changes of environmental factors under natural conditions; studies of responses of algal cells, vegetative and generative cells, tissues and organs of higher plants to microgravity in space-fl ight experiments and ground simulation.
  • Studies of phytohormonal regulation of growth and development processes in higher and cryptogamic plants and fungi, fl owering regulation in angiosperms, the adaptive role of growth regulators and phytohormones, biomarkers of plants with different types of their ecological strategy.
  • Theoretical and applied aspects of bioenergetics, including hydrogen photoproduction, molecular mechanisms of photosynthetic light energy transformation, structure and function of photosynthetic membranes and supramolecular complexes involved in the biological transformation of energy and metabolites, and development of issues in photobiotechnology – theoretical and applied aspects of the use of photosynthetic organisms to solve some problems of alternative energy production.

Principal achievements of the Institute:

The Institute of Botany is an internationally known and leading Ukrainian institution doing research and assessment of phytological and mycological objects at various levels of living-matter organization – from molecules to ecosystems – and of their evolutionary pathways. The research focus is on the diversity of algae, bryophytes, vascular plants, fungi and lichens, development of phylogenetic systems; this information is presented in numerous fundamental “Floras” publications. Solving relevant taxonomy issues, Institute’s scientists described new families, genera and hundreds of new species. Theoretical principles of ecological and cenotic differentiation of plant communities, their functions under the impact of natural and anthrogenic factors, development of classification of various plant communities and publication of a prodromus of Ukraine’s vegetation are among their achievements. New approaches have been proposed for assessing the structure and functioning of ecological systems, which rely on thermodynamic laws, in particular, their energy parameters. Data concerning geographical aspects of biodiversity are presented in a series of maps and atlases.

In experimental botany, developing ideas of academician M. G. Kholodny with methods of modern science, Institute's scholars obtained new data and made monographic theoretical generalizations on hormonal regulation of growth processes in various plant organs. In particular, they discovered the phenomenon of biparental inheritance of gene determinants of the cytoplasm in parasexual hybridization of somatic plant cells of both parental types; gravity response of plant cells not specialized to perceive gravitational vector; found general patterns in the effect of microgravitation on cells. Important recent results also involve the methods of higher production and extraction of lipids from microalgae and hydrogen production by these microorganisms, with a view to finding new sources of alternative energy.

Applied studies resulted in scientific principles of ECONET development in Ukraine, scientific justification for establishing dozens of protected areas, monitoring data of their transformation under the impact of various factors, compilation of the Red and Green Data Books of Ukraine, obtaining highly productive strains of edible and medicinal mushrooms, new strains of microscopic algae, several practical technologies for mushroom cultivation, water treatment with algae, cultivation of Spirulina platensis microscopic alga and ‘Pensinorm’ and ‘Bactosol’ novel preparations for agriculture and livestock breeding.

Contact Details

Yakiv P. Didukh, Director, corresponding member of NASU
Address: 2 Tereshchenkivska St., 01601, Kyiv, Ukraine
Phone/fax: (044) 234 4041
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Website: http://www.botany.kiev.ua

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