What is lactic acid?
Lactic acid, an organic compound found in every human body, has the molecular formula CH3CH(OH)COOH. Lactic acid was discovered in 1780 by Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele. First of all, it is also called lactic acid because sour milk is obtained from milk in the industrial sense. It is found in many milk and dairy products. It is white in color and solid. It can be miscible with water. It forms a colorless solution when dissolved.
Lactic acid is found in the muscles, blood and some organs in the human body. If pyruvate is produced as a result of anaerobic glucose, muscle cells try to incorporate this lactic acid into energy production in an aerobic manner. If this pyruvate does not have the capacity to be used by the muscle cell, it turns into lactate.
Lactic acid in the human body occurs after the muscles of the person are not accustomed to work and after intense exercise. Glycogen, an organic component that is found in carbohydrates and has the fastest power to reach the blood during sports, is broken down into energy. Oxygen is used during this breakdown, and a decrease in oxygen may occur throughout the training. The energy produced in the absence of oxygen causes the formation of lactic acid in the human body. This lactic acid first accumulates in the muscles and then settles in the liver and is broken down for reuse as energy. However, lactic acid, which cannot be transported to the liver and accumulates in the muscles, can cause pain, fatigue and weakness in the human body.
While lactic acid can be found naturally in humans and natural sources, it can also be produced industrially. Lactic acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) due to the presence of a hydroxyl group adjacent to the carboxyl group. It is used as a synthetic intermediate in many organic synthesis industries and various biochemical industries. The conjugate base of lactic acid is called lactate.
How is lactic acid produced?
Laktik asit endüstriyel olarak karbonhidratların bakteriyel fermantasyonu veya asetaldehitten kimyasal sentez yoluyla üretilir. 1:1 oranında D ve L stereoizomerler karışımından veya %99.9’a kadar l-L-laktik asit içeren karışımlardan oluşan rasemik laktik asit üretimi mikrobiyal fermantasyonla mümkündür.
Industrial-scale production of D-lactic acid by fermentation is possible, but much more difficult.
What is the molecular formula of lactic acid?
Molecular formula: C3H6O3
In which sectors is lactic acid used?
- food industry
- Production of milk and dairy products
- As raw material, in production facilities such as leather, plastic, ink
- in the construction industry
What are the uses (processes) of lactic acid?
- Lactic acid is used to regulate the acidity in dairy products.
- The mixture of lactic acid and acetic acid is used as a preservative in salad dressings and salad ingredients.
- Lactic acid is sold in pharmacies as drops and syrup.
- In the food industry, synthetic lactic acid is used as a preservative and flavoring agent in carbonated beverages.
- Lactic acid is used as a raw material in the leather tanning industry, wool dyes, plastic, ink and solvent production.
- It can be used to adjust the acidity rate of concrete used in the construction industry. It has a longer lasting effect than the citric acid used here.
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