Track 1-02

Description

Leucaena leucocephala is an adapted legume widely distributed in the tropical regions of Mexico. The high crude protein content of leucaena leaves renders it appropriate for ruminant feeding under commercial conditions. However, the foliage contains the non-protein amino acid mimosine, which, if consumed in high amounts, may induce toxicity in animals which have not previously consumed the legume or without microorganisms capable of degrading mimosine and its derivatives 2,3-DHP (dihydroxypyridine) and 3,4-DHP (Hammond 1995, Palmer et al. 2010, Dalzell et al. 2012). Barros-Rodríguez et al. (2012) found that dry matter intake and weight gain were reduced when sheep grazed paddocks with 55,000 plants of leucaena per hectare. Early work in Australia led to the isolation of Synergistes jonesii, an anaerobic bacterium able to degrade 3,4-DHP and 2,3-DHP to non-toxic compounds (Allison et al. 1992). In Mexico, the presence of this microorganism in the rumen has not yet been confirmed. Inoculation of non-accustomed animals with rumen liquor of ruminants adapted to the consumption of leucaena can reduce the impact of mimosine and its metabolites on animal health (Ghosh et al. 2009; Palmer et al. 2010). The aim of the present work was to evaluate the effects of transferring rumen liquor of cows adapted to the consumption of L. leucocephala to sheep without experience of consumption, on urinary excretion of 3.4-DHP and 2.3-DHP by means of a colorimetric technique.

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Urinary Excretion of Mimosine Metabolites by Hair Sheep Fed Foliage of Leucaena leucocephala

Leucaena leucocephala is an adapted legume widely distributed in the tropical regions of Mexico. The high crude protein content of leucaena leaves renders it appropriate for ruminant feeding under commercial conditions. However, the foliage contains the non-protein amino acid mimosine, which, if consumed in high amounts, may induce toxicity in animals which have not previously consumed the legume or without microorganisms capable of degrading mimosine and its derivatives 2,3-DHP (dihydroxypyridine) and 3,4-DHP (Hammond 1995, Palmer et al. 2010, Dalzell et al. 2012). Barros-Rodríguez et al. (2012) found that dry matter intake and weight gain were reduced when sheep grazed paddocks with 55,000 plants of leucaena per hectare. Early work in Australia led to the isolation of Synergistes jonesii, an anaerobic bacterium able to degrade 3,4-DHP and 2,3-DHP to non-toxic compounds (Allison et al. 1992). In Mexico, the presence of this microorganism in the rumen has not yet been confirmed. Inoculation of non-accustomed animals with rumen liquor of ruminants adapted to the consumption of leucaena can reduce the impact of mimosine and its metabolites on animal health (Ghosh et al. 2009; Palmer et al. 2010). The aim of the present work was to evaluate the effects of transferring rumen liquor of cows adapted to the consumption of L. leucocephala to sheep without experience of consumption, on urinary excretion of 3.4-DHP and 2.3-DHP by means of a colorimetric technique.