chembox new
Reference= ["Merck Index", 11th Edition, 1756.]
IUPACName= 2,4,4-Trimethyl- 3- [(1"E",3"E",5"E",7"E",9"E",11"E",13"E",15"E",17"E")- 3,7,12,16-tetramethyl-18-(2,6,6-trimethyl-3-oxo- 1-cyclohexenyl)octadeca-1,3,5,7,9,11,13,15,17- nonaenyl] -1-cyclohex-2-enone
OtherNames=Cantaxanthin, Cantaxanthine, Canthaxanthine, Orobronze, Carophyll Red, Roxanthin Red 10, L-Orange 7, C.I. Food Orange 8, β,β-Carotene-4,4'-dione, E161g
Section1=Chembox Identifiers

Section2=Chembox Properties
MolarMass=564.82 g/mol
Appearance=Violet crystals
MeltingPt=217 °C (decomposition)

Section3=Chembox Hazards

Canthaxanthin is a carotenoid pigment widely distributed in nature. Carotenoids belong to a larger class of phytochemicals known as terpenoids. The chemical formula of canthaxanthin is C40H52O2. [ Opinion on the use of canthaxanthin in feedingstuffs for salmon ...] ] It has E number E161g.

It was first isolated in edible mushrooms. It has also been found in green algae, bacteria, crustaceans, and fish such as carp, golden mullet, seabream and trush wrasse.

In the United Kingdom, canthaxanthin is allowed by law to be added to poultry feed, some sausages mainly exported to France, and trout and salmon feed. [ [ Canthaxanthin - your questions answered] - June 13, 2002] In addition, the European Union has set the limit at 80 mg/kg of foodstuffing.

Presence in fish

Canthaxanthin is not found in wild Atlantic Salmon, but is a minor carotenoid in Pacific Salmon. Canthaxanthin is used in farm-raised trout. Canthaxanthin is used in combination with astaxanthin for some salmon feeds.

Use in tanning pills

FDA has no "tanning pills" approved for sale in the United States. In spite of this, there are companies that continue to market such products, some of which contain canthaxanthin. The FDA considers such items "adulterated cosmetics" and as a result sent "Warning Letters" to the firms citing such products as containing "a color additive that is unsafe within the meaning of section 721(a) of the FD&C Act (FD&C Act, sec. 601(e))." [ [ Warning Letters Cite Cosmetics as Adulterated Due to Violative Use of the Color Additive Canthaxanthin] ]

According to the FDA::

Tanning pills have been associated with health problems, including an eye disorder called "canthaxanthin" retinopathy, which is the formation of yellow deposits on the eye's retina. "Canthaxanthin" has also been reported to cause liver injury and a severe itching condition called urticaria, according to the AAD. [From [ "FDA & You"] "Issue #3 - Spring/Summer 2003 - Sun Safety: Protect the Skin You’re In!"]


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  • canthaxanthin — noun Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary cantha (from New Latin Cantharellus cinnabarinus, mushroom species from which it was obtained) + xanth + 1 in Date: circa 1951 a naturally occurring carotenoid C40H52O2 used especially as a… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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  • canthaxanthin — noun A xanthophyll pigment found in many plants and animals. Syn: E161g, food colouring …   Wiktionary

  • canthaxanthin — can·tha·xan·thin .kan(t) thə zan .thin n a carotenoid C40H52O2 used esp. as a color additive for food …   Medical dictionary

  • canthaxanthin — can·tha·xan·thin …   English syllables

  • canthaxanthin — ˌkan(t)thəˈzanˌthin noun Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary cantha (from New Latin Cantharellus cinnabarinus, species of mushroom from which it was isolated) + xanthin more at cantharellus : a naturally occurring carotenoid C …   Useful english dictionary

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