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  • Hydroquinone, also benzene-1,4-diol or quinol, is an aromatic organic compound which is a type of phenol, having the chemical formula C6H4(OH)2.
  • Hydroquinones are one of the two primary reagents in the defensive glands of bombardier beetles, along with hydrogen peroxide, which collect in a reservoir.


  • Hydroquinone can undergo mild oxidation to convert to the compound parabenzoquinone, C6H4O2, often called p-quinone or simply quinone.
  • Reduction of quinone reverses this reaction back to hydroquinone.
  • Some biochemical compounds in nature have this sort of hydroquinone or quinone section in their structures, such as Coenzyme Q, and can undergo similar redox interconversions.


  • The reaction of hematite with quinones and the quinone moieties of larger molecules may be an important factor in limiting the rate of reductive dissolution, especially by iron-reducing bacteria.
  • The hydroquinone-modified derivatives had much higher reducing performance when compared to non modified leonardite humic acid.


  • Hydroquinone is used as a topical application in skin whitening to reduce the color of skin as it does not have the same predisposition to cause dermatitis as Metol does.
  • It is also used as a raw material of herbicides, rubber antioxidants and dye stuffs.
  • It is a major component in most photographic developers where, with the compound Metol, it reduces silver halides to elemental silver.

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