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Is Hedysarum mackenziei (Wild Sweet Pea) Actually Toxic?

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Title:Is Hedysarum mackenziei (Wild Sweet Pea) Actually Toxic?
Authors:Treadwell, Edward M.
Clausen, Thomas P.
Keywords:Hedysarum mackenziei
wild sweet pea
Date Issued:2008
Publisher:University of Hawaii at Manoa
Citation:Treadwell EM, Clausen TP. 2008. Is Hedysarum mackenziei (wild sweet pea) actually toxic? Ethnobotany Research and Applications 6:319-321.
Abstract:Hedysarum mackenziei Richardson (wild sweet pea, bear root) is widely regarded as toxic and warnings about confusing it with its edible cousin Hedysarum alpinum Richardson (Eskimo potato) abound. To find the chemical basis for this claim, we performed an exhaustive comparison of the secondary chemistry between the two plants as well as a search for nitrogen containing metabolites (alkaloids) in both species. No chemical basis for toxicity could be found. These results were consistent with a subsequent cytotoxic assay performed on an extract of H. mackenziei. Finally, a critical examination of the literature could find no credible evidence that H. mackenziei is toxic in spite of these widespread rumors.
Appears in Collections: 2008 - Volume 6 : Ethnobotany Research and Applications

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