Participation in the project program "Sirius.Leto: Start your own project" (involvement of children and youth in project and research activities, scientific-technical and engineering creativity)

Employees of the Laboratory of Cellular Physiology and Pathology and the Research and Development Center of Biomedical Photonics at the Orel State University, as part of active work to support the research activities of schoolchildren, provide implementation of the project under the program "Sirius.Leto: Start your own project". The project team included the project leader A.Vinokurov and mentors V. Shupletsov, M. Pogonyalova and N. Golubova, who offered the students to try their hand in the application of biophotonics methods for biotesting and to conduct the research "Study of the fluorescent characteristics of chlorophyll (in photosynthetic apparatus and isolated pure) in the presence of pollutants to develop methodology and device for biotesting of environmental objects". The students of the "Quantorium" children's technology park, a structural subdivision of the Gagarin Palace of Pioneers and Schoolchildren, Anastasia Yanina, Ekaterina Vetrova, Aleksandra Trofimova, Anna Sankova, and Polina Borovleva, accepted the challenge with enthusiasm.

As a part of this work, data on the effect of heavy metal salts of various concentrations on the optical density as well as the fluorescence of alcoholic chlorophyll extracts after treatment with different duration and heating were obtained using experimental setups assembled at the Research and Development Center of Biomedical Photonics. As for today it can be said that the method of biotesting, based on changes in the optical properties of chlorophyll and not requiring the use of cells or tissues capable of photosynthesis, works and allows us to detect toxic impurities in concentrations comparable with the maximum allowable concentrations regulated by normative documents.

Thanks to the coordinated work of the project leader, mentors, and young researchers the project was successfully presented at the 10th All-Russian Youth Scientific Conference of Orel State University named after I.S. Turgenev "MIF-2022" and was awarded the diploma of the winner.