Medical Geology in Russia and the NIS

Part of the International Year of Planet Earth book series (IYPE)


Systematic and regular epidemiological studies on endemic diseases and the natural environment in Russia and NIS are scarce and sporadic. However, there have been some studies of the links between health of the population and the geological background. Information on fluorine, iodine, arsenic, selenium, and other elements’ behavior in natural environment and their effect on human health is presented in this chapter and is the first attempt to synthesize the interdisciplinary knowledge on some geological factors which affect human health in Russia and NIS. Also anthropogenic factors are mentioned, however, of geological origin.

Currently, the most important areas of the study in the field of Medical Geology in Russia – NIS are
  • • Geological and geochemical aspects of medical geology in terms of modeling and mapping of the spreading of endemic diseases, toxic elements, such as uranium, fluoride, radon, arsenic, in subsurface, geosphere, and the atmosphere, and its effect on human health.

  • • Urban and mining medical geology.

  • • Crystal chemistry and crystal genesis of biogenic minerals of different origin.

  • • The therapeutic usage of the minerals in terms of biological functions of the elements metals in medicine and industry, and economic minerals in medicine.

This chapter, written by leading experts of Russia and NIS, will be of interest to a wide audience of geologists, geochemists, physicians, as well as historians.


Geochemical anomalies Human health Russia and NIS Arsenic Fluorine Iodine Selenium Radon Mining 



The authors thank D.V. Rundkvist (V.I. Vernadsky State Geological Museum of Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia), I.V. Florinsky (Institute for Mathematical problems of Biology of Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia), L.N. Belan (Bashkir State University, Russia), W. Paul (Miner’s Christian Mission, Celifodina, Spokane, USA) for fruitful discussions and materials, H.C.W. Skinner (Departments of Geology and Geophysics and Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Yale University, New Haven, USA), M.I. Savinykh (Sibdalmumie, Novokuznetsk, Russia) for a useful suggestion, as well as N.A. Serper and I.E. Lyubimova (Fedorovsky All-Russian Research Institute for Mineral Resources, Moscow, Russia) for librarian assistance.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Russian Geological SocietyMoscowRussia
  2. 2.Russian Geological SocietyMoscowRussia
  3. 3.Geotech VIMS, Fedorovsky VIMSMoscowRussia
  4. 4.Satpaev Kazakh National Technic University, Republic of KazakhstanAlmatyKazakstan
  5. 5.Al-Faraby Kazakh National University, Republic of KazakhstanAlmatyKazakstan
  6. 6.State Brest University named after A.S. PushkinBrestRepublic of Belarus
  7. 7.Fedorovsky VIMS, Russian FederationMoscowRussia
  8. 8.St. Petersburg Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education, Russian FederationSt. PetersburgRussia
  9. 9.Institute of Precambrian Geology and Geochronology RAS, Russian FederationSt.PetersburgRussia
  10. 10.Department of GeologySt. Petersburg State University, Russian FederationSt.PetersburgRussia
  11. 11.Siberian State Medical University (SibGMU), Russian FederationTomskRussia
  12. 12.Polytechnic UniversityTomskRussia
  13. 13.Department of GeologyPolytechnic UniversityTomskRussia
  14. 14.Ltd. Infomine Research GroupMoscowRussia
  15. 15.Center for Ecological-Noosphere Studies of NAS RA (Armenia)YerevanRepublic of Armenia
  16. 16.Institute of Mineralogy, Geochemistry and Crystal Chemistry of Rare ElementsMoscowRussia
  17. 17.Community Scientific Organization of Veterans and InvalidsVladikavkazRussia
  18. 18.Department of MedicineKabardino-Balkaria State UniversityNalchikRussia
  19. 19.Sergeev Institute of Environmental Geoscience Russian Academy of Sciences (IEG RAS)MoscowRussia

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