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Cane rat (Thryonomys swinderianus) is an herbivorous animal which feeds on plant materials, including cassavas that are known to contain cyanogenic glycosides. Cyanide or cyanogenic glycosides are known to be toxic for animal consumption. Therefore, Cane rat must have an inherent mechanism for detoxifying cyanide to be able to survive on its food. Previous works on 3MST have been done on several tissues of cane rats other than the intestine. In this work, we characterized and explored a partially purified 3MST (cyanide detoxifying enzyme) from the intestine of a cane rat for a possible therapeutic source against cyanide poisoning in other mammals that are susceptible to the toxin. 3MST from the intestine of T. swinderianus had a yield of 10.3% with specific activity of 0.21Umg-. The Km and Vmax values of the 3-MST were determined to be 40 mm and 0.20µmol/ml/min respectively for KCN (Potassium Cyanide); also 33.3 mm and 0.15 µmol/ml/min for mercaptoethanol. 3-MST presents in the intestine of T. swinderianus plays a significant role in detoxification of cyanogenic compounds, which makes it an effective target for cyanide poisoning therapy.
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