A DISEASE clinically and morphologically similar to vitamin D-intoxication, characterised by hypercalcaemia and extensive soft tissue calcification, has been described in grazing animals and linked to the ingestion of leaves from several plant species including Cestrum diurnum (C.d.)1-3 and Solanum malacoxylon3. Early reports indicated that activity resembling the hormonal form of vitamin D3, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25-(OH)2D3), existed in extracts of both of these plants3-5. The active calcitropic principle from S. malacoxylon has been identified as a 1,25-(OH)2D3-glycoside6-8. We report here the isolation and identification of a 1,25-(OH) 2D3-glycoside in C.d. It is proposed that this principle accounts for the hyperabsorption of calcium found in animals eating this plant.
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