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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Understanding and Mitigating the Adverse Effects of Poisonous Plants on Livestock Production Systems

Location: Poisonous Plant Research

Title: Production of the alkaloid swainsonine by a fungal endophyte in the host Swainsona canescens

Authors
item Grum, Daniel
item Cook, Daniel
item Baucom, Deana -
item Mott, Ivan
item Gardner, Dale
item Creamer, Rebecca -
item Allen, Jeremy -

Submitted to: Journal of Natural Products
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: September 9, 2013
Publication Date: September 20, 2013
Citation: Grum, D.S., Cook, D., Baucom, D., Mott, I.W., Gardner, D.R., Creamer, R., Allen, J.G. 2013. Production of the alkaloid swainsonine by a fungal endophyte in the host Swainsona canescens. Journal of Natural Products. 76(10):1984-1988.

Interpretive Summary: Legumes belonging to the Astragalus, Oxytropis, and Swainsona genera have been noted by ranchers in the Americas, Asia and Australia to cause a neurologic disease often referred to as locoism or peastruck. The toxin in these legumes is swainsonine. Recent research has shown that in Astragalus and Oxytropis species swainsonine is produced by a fungal endophyte belonging to the Undifilum genus. Here Swainsona canescens is shown to harbor an endophyte which is closely related to Undifilum species previously cultured from locoweeds of North America and Asia. The endophyte produces swainsonine in vitro and was detected by PCR and culturing in S. canescens. The endophyte isolated from S. canescens was characterized as an Undifilum species using morphological and phylogenetic analyses.

Technical Abstract: Legumes belonging to the Astragalus, Oxytropis, and Swainsona genera have been noted by ranchers in the Americas, Asia and Australia to cause a neurologic disease often referred to as locoism or peastruck. The toxin in these legumes is swainsonine, an a-mannosidase and mannosidase II inhibitor. Recent research has shown that in Astragalus and Oxytropis species swainsonine is produced by a fungal endophyte belonging to the Undifilum genus. Here Swainsona canescens is shown to harbor an endophyte which is closely related to Undifilum species previously cultured from locoweeds of North America and Asia. The endophyte produces swainsonine in vitro and was detected by PCR and culturing in S. canescens. The endophyte isolated from S. canescens was characterized as an Undifilum species using morphological and phylogenetic analyses.

Last Modified: 10/21/2014
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