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Retene, methyl isopropyl phenanthrene or 1-methyl-7-isopropyl phenanthrene, C18H18, is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon present in the coal tar fraction, boiling above 360°CCelsius. It occurs naturally. It also occurs in the tars obtained by the distillation of resinous woods. It crystallizes in large plates, which melt at 98.5 °C and boil at 390 °C. It is readily soluble in warm ether and in hot glacial acetic acid. Sodium and boiling amyl alcohol reduce it to a tetrahydroretene, whilst if it be heated with phosphorus and hydriodic acid to 260 °C, a dodecahydride is formed. Chromic acid oxidizes it to retene quinone, phthalic acid and acetic acid. It forms a picrate which melts at 123-124 °C. Its CAS number is [ ] and its SMILES structure is Cc3cccc2c1ccc (C(C)C)cc1ccc23.
Additional recommended knowledge
Retene is derived by degradation of specific diterpenoids biologically produced by conifer trees.
The presence of traces of retene in the air is an indicator of forest fires; it is a major product of pyrolysis of conifer trees.  It is also present in effluents from wood pulp and paper mills.
Retene, together with cadalene, simonellite and ip-iHMN, is a biomarker of higher plants, which makes it useful for paleobotanic analysis of rock sediments. Ratio of retene/cadalene in sediments can reveal the ratio of the genus Pinaceae in the biosphere. 
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Retene". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|