Hydrogen cyanide production by field-grown sorghums

Hunt, B.J. and Taylor, A.O. (1976) Hydrogen cyanide production by field-grown sorghums. New Zealand Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 4 (2). pp. 191-194.

[img] PDF
Restricted to ICRISAT researchers only

Request a copy


The cyanogenic glucoside dhurrin, commonly found in sorghum, is converted to toxic HCN when ingested by stock. Analysis of material grown in the field showed that leaves of sorghum [Sorghum bicolor] cv. Sudax could produce potentially toxic levels of dhurrin even when the crop was at the recommended grazing height. Irrigation or high rainfall substantially reduced potential toxicity. There was a gradient in dhurrin levels among leaves of differing age, older leaves being highest in dhurrin. It was stressed that field sampling techniques should take these differences into account. Sorghums developed for grain or silage production had substantially higher dhurrin levels than Sudax which was developed for fresh forage. A leaf CN content of 1630 mu g CN/g DM was lethal to lactating cows whereas levels around 700 mu g CN were not. On a total leaf DM basis, the dhurrin concentration decreased as the crop matured; short growth was potentially the most toxic

Item Type: Article
Author Affiliation: Plant Physiology Division, DSIR, Palmerston North, New Zealand
Subjects: Animal Husbandary
Divisions: Sorghum
Depositing User: Ms K Syamalamba
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 10:54
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2012 10:54
URI: http://eprints.icrisat.ac.in/id/eprint/8217

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item