is a seed oil, extracted from the seeds of the Lesquerella fendleri
and other species of genus Lesquerella
, Native to the plains and mesas of southwestern United States, eastward to Kansas and southward into northern Mexico. Bladderpod oil is rich in lesquerolic acid (C20:1-OH) which is a hydroxy acid
. The only commercial source of hydroxy acid
is ricinoleic acid
(C18:1-OH), found in castor oil
. Essentially all castor oil production in the U.S. has been eliminated by a combination of economic factors, excessive allergenic reactions of field and processing workers, and toxicity of the seed meal. The fatty acid
composition of bladderpod oil is:
Other species of Lesquerella that yield similar oils include L. lindheimeri, L. densipilia, L. auriculata and L. pallida. L. fendleri is of particular interest because of the yields of 1,500 kg/ha that have been achieved in only a few years of cultivation.
The hydroxy acids
contained in bladderpod oil are an important raw material used in the manufacture of resins, waxes, nylons, plastics, corrosion inhibitors, coatings, lubricating greases and cosmetics.