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Nordihydroguaiaretic acid

Nordihydroguaiaretic acid
IUPAC name 4-[4-(3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)- 2,3-dimethylbutyl]benzene-1,2-diol
CAS number 500-38-9
PubChem 4534
MeSH Nordihydroguaiaretic+acid
Molecular formula C18H22O4
Molar mass 302.365
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)

Infobox disclaimer and references

Nordihydroguaiaretic acid (NDGA) is a potent antioxidant compound found in the long-lived creosote bush. It is believed that NDGA reduces cell damage by free radicals, so under the free-radical theory of aging, could be responsible for the bush's long life. A 1986 study [1] involved feeding female mosquitos NDGA to test the effect on their average life span. While the usual mosquito life span was 29 days, the NDGA-fed mosquitos lived an average of 45 days—an increase of 50 percent.

The plant has been used to treat a variety of illnesses including infertility, rheumatism, arthritis, diabetes, gallbladder and kidney stones, pain and inflammation but its use is controversial. It was widely used during the 1950s as a food preservative and to preserve natural fibers but was later banned after reports of toxicity during the early 1960s. Recently, it has been used as a nutritional supplement, however renal and hepatotoxicity are reported for chronic use of creosote bush and NDGA. [2]


  1. ^ Richie JP Jr, Mills BJ, Lang CA. "Dietary nordihydroguaiaretic acid increases the life span of the mosquito." Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 1986 Oct;183(1):81-5
  2. ^ Adapted from Arteaga S, Andrade-Cetto A, Cardenas R. "Larrea tridentata (Creosote bush), an abundant plant of Mexican and US-American deserts and its metabolite nordihydroguaiaretic acid." J Ethnopharmacol. 2005 Apr 26;98(3):231-9
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Nordihydroguaiaretic_acid". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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