Molecule of the Week


August 17, 2009

Melamine, or 1,3,5-triazine-2,4,6-triamine, is formally a trimer of cyanamide, but its most common manufacturing method is heating dicyandiamide under pressure. It has many industrial uses; the chief one is its reaction with formaldehyde to produce thermosetting plastics and cleaning products. This toxic compound has been in the news in recent years because of its use in China as an adulterant in infant formula and pet food to increase the apparent protein content of these products.

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