Superfine Edible Cellulose – Microcrystalline Cellulose
The superfine edible cellulose, i.e., Microcrystalline Cellulose, MCC for short, is a granular powder product with a size of about 10μm, obtained from the hydrolysis of the natural cellulose in an acidic medium, making the molecular weight reduced to a certain range. It is mainly used in the pharmaceutical industry as a pharmaceutical excipient, and compared with the starch or starch derivatives has the following advantages.
(1). It is easy to disintegrate, that is, after entering into the stomach the drug can be easily disintegrated and then absorbed by the body.
(2). It is difficult to get moldy. This is because the cellulose isβ-glucose configuration while the starch isα-configuration. Amylases generally do not attack the cellulose.
(3). The cellulose is not absorbed by the body and is not easy to react with carrying drugs, and therefore more secure. The disadvantage is the high price.
Uses of Microcrystalline Cellulose
Microcrystalline cellulose is a pure product of cellulose depolymerization, an odorless and tasteless crystalline powder prepared from the natural cellulose.
In the pharmaceutical industry, the microcrystalline cellulose products can be used as pharmaceutical excipients and disintegrating agents of tablets;
In the food industry, Microcrystalline Cellulose can be used as an important base material in functional foods and is an ideal health food additive;
In the paint industry, Microcrystalline Cellulose can be used as thickeners and emulsifiers of water-based coatings by using its thixotropic and thickening properties;
In cosmetics, Microcrystalline Cellulose has a combination of filler, thickening and emulsifying effects in itself, and has very good emulsifying capacity for the the oily substance. Thus it can be seen that Microcrystalline Cellulose has a wide range of uses, and that the domestic demand for the product will continue to increase.