Definitions

coumaric

Coumaric acid

}} Coumaric acids are organic compounds that are hydroxy derivatives of cinnamic acid. There are three isomers, o-coumaric acid, m-coumaric acid, and p-coumaric acid, that differ by the position of the hydroxy substitution of the phenyl group. p-Coumaric acid is the most abundant isomer in nature.

Together with sinapyl alcohol and coniferyl alcohols, p-coumaric acid is a major component of lignocellulose. It is biosynthesized from cinnamic acid by the action of the P450-dependent enzyme 4-cinnamic acid hydroxylase.

p-Coumaric acid can be found in a wide variety of edible plants such as peanuts, tomatoes, carrots, and garlic. It is a crystalline solid that is slightly soluble in water, but well soluble in ethanol and diethyl ether.

p-Coumaric acid has antioxidant properties and is believed to reduce the risk of stomach cancer by reducing the formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines.

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