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Enriching for rumen bacteria to degrade the Pimelea plant toxin simplexin, in an anaerobic in vitro fermenter

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Ouwerkerk, D., Gilbert, R. A., Gravel, J. L., Maguire, A. J., Minchin, C. M., Hungerford, N. L., Loh, Z. H. and Fletcher, M. T. (2021) Enriching for rumen bacteria to degrade the Pimelea plant toxin simplexin, in an anaerobic in vitro fermenter. In: 33rd Australian Association of Animal Sciences Conference, 1-3 February 2021, Fremantle, Western Australia.



Three species of Australian native plants, Pimelea trichostachya, P. simplex and P. elongata, are endemic to the arid rangelands of Queensland, New South Wales and South Australia and are responsible for Pimelea poisoning, also known as St George or Marree disease. Pimelea poisoning occurs in cattle ingesting Pimelea plants, with the orthoester simplexin identified as the responsible toxin. There is no effective treatment and economic losses have been estimated at over $50 million during significant Pimelea poisoning events. In a previous feeding trial, animals were fed increasing amounts of Pimelea, and after initially showing signs of poisoning, the animals appeared to adapt to ingesting Pimelea, possibly through rumen microbial degradation of the toxin (Fletcher et al., 2014). Kangaroos, forestomach fermenters, often graze pastures containing Pimelea with no apparent ill effects.
To investigate the degradation effect further, a series of 30 day in vitro, anaerobic fermentations were undertaken.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Business groups:Animal Science
Subjects:Animal culture > Cattle
Veterinary medicine > Veterinary microbiology
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Animal culture > Feeds and feeding. Animal nutrition
Live Archive:25 Feb 2021 04:42
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:46

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