Vicia faba

General poisoning notes:

Broad bean (Vicia faba) is a cultivated plant that is grown occasionally in Canada. The beans are used as human food and are being evaluated as a protein supplement for livestock. Broad beans are not poisonous to humans in the conventional sense, but they cause favism in susceptible individuals. These individuals have a genetically transmitted, male sex-linked deficiency to the enzyme glucose-6- phosphate dehydrogenase. Certain groups such as Oriental Jews, Mediterranean Europeans, Arabs, Asians, and blacks may have the deficiency. The disease can cause death in severe cases. Livestock, including swine, have also been poisoned from ingesting high quantities of beans. Dietary broad beans can also cause metabolic problems in poultry. It is important to note that nonsusceptible persons who eat broad beans are not at risk (Kingsbury 1964, Cooper and Johnson 1984, Cheeke and Schull 1985, Roy and Spencer 1989).

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.
  • Cooper, M. R., Johnson, A. W. 1984. Poisonous plants in Britain and their effects on animals and man. Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, England. 305 pp.
  • Kingsbury, J. M. 1964. Poisonous plants of the United States and Canada. Prentice-Hall Inc., Englewood Cliffs, N.J., USA. 626 pp.
  • Liener, I. E. 1989. Antinutritional factors. Pages 339-382 in Matthews, R. H., ed. Legumes: chemistry, technology, and human nutrition. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.

Nomenclature:

Scientific Name:
Vicia faba L.
Vernacular name(s):
broad bean
Scientific family name:
Leguminosae
Vernacular family name:
pea

Go to ITIS*ca for more taxonomic information on: Vicia faba

References:

  • Agriculture Quebec. 1975. Noms des maladies des plantes du Canada/ Names of plant diseases in Canada. , Quebec City, Que., Canada. 288 pp.
  • Alex, J. F., Cayouette, R., Mulligan, G. A. 1980. Common and botanical names of weeds in Canada/ Noms populaires et scientifiques des plantes nuisibles du Canada. Revised. Agric. Can. Publ., Ottawa, Ont., Canada. 132 pp.
  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Scoggan, H. J. 1978, 1979. The flora of Canada. Nat. Mus. Nat. Sci. (Ottawa) Publ. Bot. 7(1)-7(4). 1711 pp.
  • Van Wijk, H. L. 1911. A dictionary of plant names. Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, The Netherlands. 1444 pp.
  • Victorin, M. 1964. Flore Laurentienne. 2nd ed. Univ. Montreal, Montreal, Que., Canada. 952 pp.

Geographic Information

Plant or plant parts used in or around the home.

References:

  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Boivin, B. 1966, 1967.Énumération des plantes du Canada. Provencheria 6. Nat. Can. (Que.) 93: 253-274; 371-437; 583-646; 989-1063. 94: 131-157; 471-528; 625-655.

Image or illustration :

Images: Vicia faba - Google Search

Notes on Poisonous plant parts:

Susceptible individuals who ingest raw or partly cooked seeds and inhale pollen can be poisoned (Cooper and Johnson 1984).

Toxic parts:

  • pollen
  • seeds

References:

  • Cooper, M. R., Johnson, A. W. 1984. Poisonous plants in Britain and their effects on animals and man. Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, England. 305 pp.

Notes on Toxic plant chemicals:

Two glycosides, convicine and vicine, and their respective aglycones, isouramil and divicine, are implicated in favism. In individuals with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency, a cycle is prevented that would normally reduce the oxidants so that they cannot attack the red cell membrane (Cheeke and Schull 1985).

Toxic plant chemicals:

  • convicine
  • vicine

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.
  • Liener, I. E. 1989. Antinutritional factors. Pages 339-382 in Matthews, R. H., ed. Legumes: chemistry, technology, and human nutrition. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.

Animals/Human Poisoning:

Note: When an animal is listed without additional information, the literature (as of 1993) contained no detailed explanation.

Chickens

General symptoms of poisoning:

Notes on poisoning:

Unprocessed broad beans contain factors that lower the rate of chicken growth and alter the size of liver and pancreas. Dietary broad beans have a marked influence on the metabolism of laying hens. Vicine, which is thermostable, causes a reduction in the number of ova, in egg weight, in fertility, and in egg hatchability (Cheeke and Schull 1985).

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.

Humans

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.
  • Cooper, M. R., Johnson, A. W. 1984. Poisonous plants in Britain and their effects on animals and man. Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, England. 305 pp.

Swine

General symptoms of poisoning:

Notes on poisoning:

Broad beans are used as animal feed as silage or are added to feed. However, in one case in Poland, pigs were poisoned after eating broad beans as one-third of their diet. Symptoms included depression, reduced activity, flatulence, and constipation. Postmortem examination revealed inflammation of the alimentary tract and pale yellow liver and kidneys (Cooper and Johnson 1984).

References:

  • Cooper, M. R., Johnson, A. W. 1984. Poisonous plants in Britain and their effects on animals and man. Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, England. 305 pp.

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