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Ethiopian Medicinal Plants Kill Sheep Parasite Eggs

16 April 2015

UK - Ethiopian plant species commonly used to treat parasitic infections cheaply in both humans and livestock have managed to prevent hatching in eggs of sheep parasites.

According to a study by Kettama Tolossa of Scotland's Rural College (SRUC), many farmers in Ethiopia cannot afford common medicines such as anthelmintics, so they must rely on their indigenous knowledge to treat themselves and their animals.

The study aimed to validate the use of these plants as medicine, find new medicinal plants, and standardise any plant extracts to aid their development into new drugs, the British Society of Animal Science Conference heard this week.

To do this, the plants were collected and identified before extracts was made used different solvent types.

The plant extracts were tested on samples of Teladorsagia circumcincta eggs obtained from sheep faeces. The stomach worm parasite is a common problem in Ethiopia.

At high concentrations, some of the plant extracts managed to inhibit egg hatching by 100 per cent. Adenia species and Cissus ruspolii plants showed the best performance, and these plant extracts have been selected for further study.

The researchers have also managed to find the chemical fractions of the plant extracts which cause the egg hatch inhibition, giving them scope to identify the active ingredient of the extract in the future.

Mr Tolossa said that he eventually planned to look at the structural characteristics of the chemicals in the medicinal plants.

Alice Mitchell

Alice Mitchell
News Team - Editor



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