what is microcrystalline cellulose?


MCC (microcrystalline cellulose) is a kind of purified and partially depolymerized cellulose, white, odorless, tasteless and in the shape of crystalline powder made up of porous particles. MCC is widely used in the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, food and other industries. Different particle sizes and moisture contents have different characteristics and applications.


Microcrystalline cellulose has been included in the United States Pharmacopoeia, European Pharmacopoeia, Japanese Pharmacopoeia, Chinese Pharmacopoeia


General Name: Microcrystalline Cellulose

Synonyms: Celex, Emcocel, crocrystalline-Cellulose, etc.

CAS Number: 9004-36-6

Molecular Formula: (C6H10O5)n, n≈220

Molecular Weight: about 36000

English Initials: MCC



1. In the Pharmaceutical Industry

It is often used as adsorbents, suspending agents, diluents and disintegrating agents. MCC is widely used in the pharmaceutical preparation, mainly as diluents and adhesives in oral tablets and capsules. It can be used for wet granulation as well as direct compression by dry method. It has some lubrication and disintegration action so is very useful in tablet preparation.


2. In the Food Industry

In the food industry, MCC can be used as an important base in functional foods and is an ideal health food additive.

1). It can maintain emulsification and foam stability.

2). It can maintain high temperature stability.

3). It can improve the liquid stability.

4). It can act as nutritional supplements and thickeners.

5). It has many other uses.


3. In Cosmetics

As an ingredient, MCC can be used in the production of various kinds of cosmetics, skin care and treatment products, and detergents.


Microcrystalline cellulose can be produced by controlled hydrolysis of α-cellulose with the dilute inorganic acid solution, and α-cellulose can be obtained from the plant fibers containing cellulose pulp. Hydrolyzed cellulose can form the dry porous particles with a wide particle size distribution by filtration, purification, and water slurry spray drying.


The product is widely used in the oral preparations and food, a relatively non-toxic and non-irritating substance. It can not be absorbed orally, with almost no potential toxicity. Heavy use may cause mild diarrhea. It has no difficulty as an excipient of pharmaceutical formulation.



This product is hygroscopic and stable substance. Large quantities should be stored in a cool dry airtight container.



Microcrystalline cellulose is incompatible with strong oxidizing agents.



This product is included in the GRAS, permitted as a food additive in Europe, included in FDA “Inactive Ingredients Guide“, allowed to be used in the non-injectable formulations.



This product is white or off-white powder; odorless and tasteless.

This product is insoluble in ethanol, water, acetone or toluene.



Pharmaceutical excipients, fillers and disintegrating agents



Sealed storage

what is microcrystalline cellulose

what is microcrystalline cellulose?

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