Erythorbic acid

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Erythorbic acid
D-Erythorbic acid.svg
CAS number 89-65-6 YesY
PubChem 6981
ChemSpider 16736142 YesY
UNII 311332OII1 YesY
ChEBI CHEBI:51438 YesY
Jmol-3D images Image 1
Molecular formula C6H8O6
Molar mass 176.12 g mol−1
Density 0.704 g/cm3
Melting point 164 to 172 °C (327 to 342 °F; 437 to 445 K) (decomposes)
Acidity (pKa) 2.1
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C (77 °F), 100 kPa)
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Infobox references

Erythorbic acid (isoascorbic acid, D-araboascorbic acid) is a stereoisomer of ascorbic acid (vitamin C).[1] It is a natural product, a vegetable-derived food additive produced from sucrose. It is denoted by E number E315, and is widely used as an antioxidant in processed foods.[2]

Clinical trials have been conducted to investigate aspects of the nutritional value of erythorbic acid. One such trial investigated the effects of erythorbic acid on vitamin C metabolism in young women; no effect on vitamin C uptake or clearance from the body was found.[3] A later study found that erythorbic acid is a potent enhancer of nonheme-iron absorption.[4]

Since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration banned the use of sulfites as a preservative in foods intended to be eaten fresh (such as salad bar ingredients), the use of erythorbic acid as a food preservative has increased.

It is also used as a preservative in cured meats and frozen vegetables.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Erythorbic acid and its sodium salt Dr R. Walker, Professor of Food Science, Department of Biochemistry, University of Surrey, England.
  2. ^ Current EU approved additives and their E Numbers, Food Standards Agency
  3. ^ Sauberlich, HE; Tamura T; Craig CB; Freeberg LE; Liu T (September 1996). "Effects of erythorbic acid on vitamin C metabolism in young women". American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 64 (3): pp. 336–46. PMID 8780343. 
  4. ^ Fidler, MC; Davidsson L; Zeder C; Hurrell RF (January 2004). "Erythorbic acid is a potent enhancer of nonheme-iron absorption". American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 79 (1): 99–102. PMID 14684404. 
  5. ^ Hui YH (2006). Handbook of Food Science, Technology and Engineering. CRC Press. pp. 83–32. ISBN 0-8493-9848-7.