Definition of Waxes: Waxes are simple lipids made up of fatty acid chains esterified to long-chain alcohols. The alcohol may contain 12-32 C
How is ester bond formed in wax?The OH of -COOH group of fatty acid reacts with OH of alcohol releasing a water molecule and thus forms the ester linkage.
Where are the waxes found in nature?
- Bees wax
- The term wax derived from “weax "meaning substance made by bees
- spermaceti wax in sperm whale
- Carnauba palm wax: a Brazilian Palm
Waxes: Properties and Function
- Waxes are simple lipids; hydrophobic and insoluble in water
- Chemically inert with high melting points
- Bees used to construct combs; for food storing during winter
- In birds, aquatic plants and animals; offers water proofing
- Waxes also serve as energy-storage substances in plankton
- Wax on leaf and fruit surface prevent excess water loss Protects from parasites and insects
- Spermaceti wax in Sperm whale helps in echolocation and keeping buoyancy