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DEXTRINE (British Gum, Starch Gum, Leiocome), (C6H10O5)x, a substance produced from starch by the action of dilute acids, or by roasting it at a temperature between 170° and 240° C. It is manufactured by spraying starch with 2% nitric acid, drying in air, and then heating to about 110°. Different modifications are known, e.g. amylodextrine, erythrodextrine and achroodextrine. Its name has reference to its powerful dextrorotatory action on polarized light. Pure dextrine is an insipid, odourless, white substance; commercial dextrine is sometimes yellowish, and contains burnt or unchanged starch. It dissolves in water and dilute alcohol; by strong alcohol it is precipitated from its solutions as the hydrated compound, C6H10O5.H2O. Diastase converts it eventually into maltose, C12H22O11; and by boiling with dilute acids (sulphuric, hydrochloric, acetic) it is transformed into dextrose, or ordinary glucose, C6H12O6. It does not ferment in contact with yeast, and does not reduce Fehling's solution. If heated with strong nitric acid it gives oxalic, and not mucic acid. Dextrine much resembles gum arabic, for which it is generally substituted. It is employed for sizing paper, for stiffening cotton goods, and for thickening colours in calico printing, also in the making of lozenges, adhesive stamps and labels, and surgical bandages.

See Otto Lueger, Lexikon der gesamten Technik.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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