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Behenic acid

Behenic acid
IUPAC name Docosanoic acid
Other names Behenic acid, Docosanoic acid; 1-Docosanoic acid; n-Docosanoic acid, n-Docosanoate, Glycon B-70, Hydrofol Acid 560, Hydrofol 2022-55, Hystrene 5522, Hystrene 9022, Prifrac 2989
CAS number 112-85-6
PubChem 8215
EINECS number 204-010-8
Molecular formula C22H44O2
Molar mass 340.58 g/mol
Appearance White to yellowish crystals or powder
Melting point

74 - 78 °C [1]

Boiling point

306 °C

NFPA 704
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)

Infobox disclaimer and references

Behenic acid, also docosanoic acid, is a normal carboxylic acid, a fatty acid with formula C21H43COOH. In appearance, it consists of white to cream color crystals or powder with a melting point of 74-78°C and boiling point of 306°C.

At 9%, it is a major component of Ben oil (or behen oil), which is extracted from the seeds of the Ben-oil tree. It is so named from the Persian month Bahman when the roots of this tree were harvested.

Behenic acid is also present in some other oils and oil-bearing plants, including rapeseed (canola) and peanut oil and skins. It is estimated that one ton of peanut skins contains 13 pounds of behenic acid. Commercially, behenic acid is often used to give hair conditioners and moisturizers their smoothing properties.[2]

As a dietary oil, behenic acid is poorly absorbed. In spite of its low bioavailability compared with oleic acid, behenic acid is a cholesterol-raising fatty acid in humans.[3]

Reduction of behenic acid yields behenyl alcohol.



  1. ^ Safety (MSDS) data for behenic acid
  2. ^ USDA Scientists Find Treasure in Peanut Skins
  3. ^ Caterm, Nilo B and Margo A Denke. January 2001 Behenic acid is a cholesterol-raising saturated fatty acid in humans. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, v 73, No. 1, pp41-44.

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Behenic_acid". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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