Simple metal ions may induce both radiomimetic effects and genuine gene mutations of the same type which occurs from ionizing radiation and from treatment with some chemical agencies as e.g., mustard gas. The main material during the experiments has been species of Pisum. The biochemical principle which lies behind these reactions is the complex-forming ability among those reactive bivalent metal elements. The author assumes that interruptions of the chelate formation in the cell synthesis form the real background to the observed activity of the metal ions. The possible role in the evolution of the plant- and animal kingdom and the probable value for plant-breeding of the mutation activity observed are suggested. A new field for mutation experiments may here be opened and the results must hitherto be judged as interesting and promising. 13 references, 7 figures, 4 tables.