The study of all things related to DNA is still very cutting edge. In a specific study of species affected by the Chernobyl disaster, we can see how some DNA adapts and changes.
Nearly every living organism is affected when a disaster on the scale of the Chernobyl accident happens. Scientists have focused a lot of research on animals in this fallout zone. The results from these studies have opened doors to new ideas and understanding about how evolution and changes happen in DNA.
Scientists that study this information have a DNA database available to use in comparing changes that occur over time and through generations. This database allows careful scrutinization of the smallest changes that occur in DNA. When scientists focused in on species that were affected by the Chernobyl disaster, they were able to see which animals would be most and and least affected by radiation fallout, due the changes in their DNA.
With every generation, DNA changes very slightly. This is due to a natural mutations and the organisms ability to repair these mutations. Whenever a change occurs in the DNA, scientists call this the substitution rate. When scientists study these substitution rates in a disaster zone like Chernobyl, they are able to see which species have the greatest and least chance at survival or adaptation.
Although the Chernobyl disaster was a horrible tragedy, technology and science is using this tragedy to further our knowledge. The more we understand about the long term affects of nuclear fallout, the better chance we have at survival, should it happen again.