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Information @ a Glance


  • Aleuritic Acid is a unique acid containing three hydroxyl groups of which two are of adjacent carbon atoms.
  • Aleuritic acid (9,10,16-trihydroxy-palmitic acid) is a major constituent acid (~35%) of lac resin (shellac).
  • Shellac is well known as a wood finish but its principal modern-day use is as a coating for pharmaceutical tablets.


  • Aleuritic Acid (9, 10, 16-trihydroxypalmitic acid), obtained from shellac by saponification and several filtration processes.
  • Aleuritic Acid is moderately soluble in hot water and crystallises out on cooling the solution.


  • Aleuritic Acid is isolated from the resin and mainly used in the perfumery industry, as a starting material for the preparation of "musk" aroma compounds as well as medicinal and bioactive compounds.
  • Aleuritic acid is also an important raw material for the synthesis of the perfumery musk compounds.
  • Aleuritic Acid is a critical component in the synthesis of macro-cyclic fragrance chemicals such as ambrettolide, iso-ambrettolide, civetone, dehydiocivetone, exaltone, glucose manoaleuritate and related lactones.
  • Lac and Shellac has been used in industries such as paint, varnishes, pharmaceuticals, and confectionaries from centuries.


  • The Chennai-based ayurvedic research centre has been asked by Shellac Export Promotion Council (SEPC) to develop ambrettolide from aleuritic acid, which is a high value ingredient for the perfume industry.
  • In the world market, pheromone currently fetches $400 per kg and ambrettolide fetches $200 per kg, compared to aleuritic acid, priced at $30 a kg.
  • Aleuritic acid is the highest value export from India per tonne and has shown the most dramatic increase from 4percent by value to 7 percent.

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