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- Tannic acid is a specific
commercial form of tannin, a type of polyphenol. Its weak
acidity (pKa around 10)
is due to these phenol groups in the structure.
- Commercial tannic acid is
usually extracted from any of the following plant part: Tara
spinosa), gallnuts from Rhus semialata or Quercus infectoria or
Sicilian Sumac leaves (Rhus coriaria).
- Tannic acid (TAN-ik AS-id)
is a pale yellow amorphous powder, shiny scales, or spongy
material that gradually
darkens when exposed to air. It is odorless but has a strong,
- Tannins are a basic
ingredient in the chemical staining of wood, and are already
present in woods like oak,
walnut, and mahogany.
- Tannin occurs naturally in
tea, coffee, oak, sumac bark and myrobalan.
- Tannic acid can be applied
to woods low in tannin so chemical stains that require tannin
content will react.
- The presence of tannins in
the bark of redwood (Sequoia) is a strong natural defense
decomposition and infestation by certain insects such as
termites. It is found in the seeds, bark, cones, and
- Tannic acid is a common
mordant used in the dyeing process for cellulose fibers such as
combined with alum and/or iron.
- Tannic acid is used in the
conservation of ferrous (iron based) metal objects to passivate
- Tannic acid reacts with
the corrosion products to form a more stable compound, thus
corrosion from taking place. After treatment the tannic acid
residue is generally left on the object so that
if moisture reaches the surface the tannic acid will be
rehydrated and prevent or slow any corrosion.
- Use of tannic acid in food
applications is far more widespread and significant amounts are
used as process
aids in beer clarification, aroma compound in soft drinks and
- Today tannic acid is still
used in pharmaceutical applications to produce albumine tannate
which is used as
an anti-diarrhea agent.
- Tannic acid is also used
to produce tannate salts of certain anti-histamins and anti-tussives
increased stability or slow release properties to the API
(active pharmaceutical ingredient).
- In manufacturing, tannic
acid is used in ointments and suppositories for the treatment of
tanning hides and manufacturing ink; and to kill dust mites on
- Tannic acids help
eliminate diarrhea, reduce swelling of hemorrhoids, loosen
catarrh in the respiratory
system, and control various kinds of internal bleeding.
Externally, tannins are beneficial in rubs for aching
muscles and joints, in salves for open, slow-healing sores, and
- Plants high in tannic acid
have been used to treat cancers, but tannic acid itself has been
found to be
carcinogenic under certain conditions.
- Several Studies have shown
tannic acid has antiviral, antimicrobial, and antibacterial
properties. In many
cases it acts directly on the organism to inactivate it.
- Tannins have also been
implicated in hyaluronidase system. That is, they destroy
hyaluronidase in much the
same manner as does echinacea, thereby defending the cells of
the body against viral invasion.
- Tannin is an ideal
candidate for commercial extraction since it finds a ready
market in leather industry and
ayurvedic medical prescriptions.
- Tannin protects the
vulnerable parts of the plants from microbial attack by
inactivating viruses and invasive microbial extracellular
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