Molecule of the Week

p-Coumaric acid

July 29, 2013

In 1865, the Austrian chemist H. Hlasiwetz isolated the crystalline solid p-coumaric acid from plants. The acid is biosynthesized from cinnamic acid and occurs in many parts of legumes and other edible plant species.

Recently, M. R. Berenbaum and colleagues at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign) found that honeybees fed with honey are more pesticide-resistant than those fed with substitutes such as corn syrup. They showed that p-coumaric acid extracted from honey increases bees’ metabolism of the miticide coumaphos.

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