Research related to Anti-Parasitic Benefits
Over 15 years, several studies in different parts of the world have shown that some tannin-containing Legumes, like sainfoin, can present some antiparasitic properties. Sainfoin, and Birdsfoot Trefoil have been chosen because of thier wide potential application around Europe. In the laboratory, the anthelmintic properties (activity against worms) of sainfoin have been confirmed on both the nematodes of the digestive tract of sheep, goats and cattle. The possible effects against coccidia are also explored and look promising.
Studies on infected sheep and goats have also indicated that the consumption of sainfoin might contribute to”slow down” the dynamics of nematode infections and therefore, allow to reduce the reliance on chemical drugs. However, to use with efficiency, sainfoin in the various farm situations found in Europe, it is essential to understand the origins of the variations in results which has been observed through different assays. This is one of the key objectives of the Healthy Hay project, in particular by creating links between biochemists and parasitologists.
Irene Mueller-Harvey, Giuseppe Bee, Frigga Dohme-Meier, Hervé Hoste, Maarit Karonen, Roland Kölliker, Andreas Lüscher, Vincent Niderkorn, Wilbert F. Pellikaan, Juha-Pekka Salminen, Leif Skřt, Lydia M.J. Smith, Stig M. Thamsborg, Paul Totterdell, Ian Wilkinson, Andrew R. Williams, Blasius N. Azuhnwi, Nicolas Baert, Anja Grosse Brinkhaus, Giuseppe Copani, Olivier Desrues.