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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

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Abstract Volume 9 Issue 6 (2004) pp 366-369

Isolation of Oil of Nutmeg and Trimyristin from Nutmeg

Robert Duarte, Janne T. Nielsen, and Veljko Dragojlovic*,

Department of Math, Science, and Technology, Nova Southeastern University, 3301 College Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314 and Oceanographic Center, Nova Southeastern University, 8000 North Ocean Drive, Dania, FL 33004, veljko@nova.edu
Received July 14, 2004. Accepted September 2, 2004.

Published online: 8 October 2004

Abstract. In a single three-hour experiment students isolate oil of nutmeg by steam distillation of nutmeg and trimyristin by solid–liquid extraction from the residue. Warm ethanol is used as a safe and inexpensive solvent to extract pure trimyristin in good yield. In the following three-hour experiment students hydrolyze trimyristin and isolate myristic acid. They evaluate the purity of the isolated materials and success of the saponification by thin-layer chromatography. Myristic acid is identified from its melting point.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; organic chemistry; lipids; natural products; plant chemistry

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail: veljko@nova.edu)

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Supporting Materials:

Additional information for the instructors, experimental details and the handout to students are available in the one compressed ZIP file (213 KB).


Issue date: December 1, 2004

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