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Record Information
Created at2005-11-16 15:48:42 UTC
Updated at2021-10-07 20:39:23 UTC
NP-MRD IDNP0000898
Secondary Accession NumbersNone
Natural Product Identification
Common NamePropionic acid
DescriptionPropionic acid (PA) is an organic acid. It exists a clear liquid with a pungent and unpleasant smell somewhat resembling body odor. Propionic acid (PA) is widely used as an antifungal agent in food. It is present naturally at low levels in dairy products and occurs ubiquitously, together with other short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), in the gastro-intestinal tract of humans and other mammals as an end-product of the microbial digestion of carbohydrates. The metabolism of propionic acid begins with its conversion to propionyl coenzyme A, the usual first step in the metabolism of carboxylic acids. Since propionic acid has three carbons, propionyl-CoA cannot directly enter either beta oxidation or the citric acid cycles. In most vertebrates, propionyl-CoA is carboxylated to D-methylmalonyl-CoA, which is isomerised to L-methylmalonyl-CoA. Propionic acid has significant physiological activity in animals. Propionic acid is irritant but produces no acute systemic effects and has no demonstrable genotoxic potential (PMID 1628870 ). The human skin is host of several species of bacteria known as Propionibacteria, which are named after their ability to produce propionic acid. The most notable one is the Cutibacterium acnes (formerly known as Propionibacterium acnes), which lives mainly in the sebaceous glands of the skin and is one of the principal causes of acne. Propionic aciduria is one of the most frequent organic acidurias, a disease that comprise many various disorders. The outcome of patients born with Propionic aciduria is poor intellectual development patterns, with 60% having an IQ less than 75 and requiring special education. Successful liver and/or renal transplantations, in a few patients, have resulted in better quality of life but have not necessarily prevented neurological and various visceral complications. These results emphasize the need for permanent metabolic follow-up whatever the therapeutic strategy (PMID 15868474 ). Decreased early mortality, less severe symptoms at diagnosis, and more favorable short-term neurodevelopmental outcome were recorded in patients identified through expanded newborn screening. (PMID 16763906 )↵ When propionic acid is infused directly into rodents' brains, it produces hyperactivity, dystonia, social impairment, perseveration and brain changes (e.G., Innate neuroinflammation, glutathione depletion) that may be used as a means to model autism in rats. Propionic acid is a metabolite of Bacteroides, Clostridium, Dialister, Megasphaera, Phascolarctobacterium, Propionibacterium, Propionigenum, Salmonella, Selenomonas and Veillonella (https://Www.Mdpi.Com/2311-5637/3/2/21).
Acide propanoiqueChEBI
Acide propioniqueChEBI
Ethanecarboxylic acidChEBI
Ethylformic acidChEBI
Metacetonic acidChEBI
Methylacetic acidChEBI
Propanoic acidChEBI
Propioic acidChEBI
Propoic acidChEBI
Pseudoacetic acidChEBI
Antischim bHMDB
Propionic acid, zinc saltHMDB
Potassium propionateHMDB
Chromium propionateHMDB
Lithium propanoateHMDB
Zinc propionateHMDB
Chemical FormulaC3H6O2
Average Mass74.0785 Da
Monoisotopic Mass74.03678 Da
IUPAC Namepropanoic acid
Traditional Namepropanoic acid
CAS Registry Number79-09-4
InChI Identifier
Experimental Spectra
Spectrum TypeDescriptionDepositor IDDepositor OrganizationDepositorDeposition DateView
1D NMR1H NMR Spectrum (1D, 500 MHz, H2O, experimental)Wishart LabWishart LabDavid Wishart2021-06-20View Spectrum
2D NMR[1H, 13C]-HSQC NMR Spectrum (2D, 600 MHz, H2O, experimental)Wishart LabWishart LabDavid Wishart2021-06-20View Spectrum
Predicted Spectra
Not Available
Chemical Shift Submissions
Spectrum TypeDescriptionDepositor IDDepositor OrganizationDepositorDeposition DateView
1D NMR13C NMR Spectrum (1D, 400 MHz, H2O, simulated)V.dorna832021-08-02View Spectrum
Species of Origin
Species NameSourceReference
Cannabis sativaCannabisDB
      Not Available
Carica papayaKNApSAcK Database
Carica papaya L.Plant
Cuscuta chinensisKNApSAcK Database
Ginkgo bilobaKNApSAcK Database
Panax ginsengKNApSAcK Database
Chemical Taxonomy
Description Belongs to the class of organic compounds known as carboxylic acids. Carboxylic acids are compounds containing a carboxylic acid group with the formula -C(=O)OH.
KingdomOrganic compounds
Super ClassOrganic acids and derivatives
ClassCarboxylic acids and derivatives
Sub ClassCarboxylic acids
Direct ParentCarboxylic acids
Alternative Parents
  • Monocarboxylic acid or derivatives
  • Carboxylic acid
  • Organic oxygen compound
  • Organic oxide
  • Hydrocarbon derivative
  • Organooxygen compound
  • Carbonyl group
  • Aliphatic acyclic compound
Molecular FrameworkAliphatic acyclic compounds
External Descriptors
Physical Properties
Experimental Properties
Melting Point-20.7 °CNot Available
Boiling Point140.00 to 141.00 °C. @ 760.00 mm HgThe Good Scents Company Information System
Water Solubility1000 mg/mLNot Available
LogP0.33Hansch CH, Leo A and Hoekman DH. "Exploring QSAR: Hydrophobic, Electronic, and Steric Constraints. Volume 1" ACS Publications (1995).
Predicted Properties
Water Solubility352 g/LALOGPS
pKa (Strongest Acidic)4.75ChemAxon
Physiological Charge-1ChemAxon
Hydrogen Acceptor Count2ChemAxon
Hydrogen Donor Count1ChemAxon
Polar Surface Area37.3 ŲChemAxon
Rotatable Bond Count1ChemAxon
Refractivity17.27 m³·mol⁻¹ChemAxon
Polarizability7.24 ųChemAxon
Number of Rings0ChemAxon
Rule of FiveYesChemAxon
Ghose FilterNoChemAxon
Veber's RuleYesChemAxon
MDDR-like RuleNoChemAxon
DrugBank IDDB03766
Phenol Explorer Compound IDNot Available
FoodDB IDFDB031132
KNApSAcK IDC00044287
Chemspider ID1005
KEGG Compound IDC00163
BiGG ID34098
Wikipedia LinkPropionic acid
PubChem Compound1032
PDB IDNot Available
ChEBI ID30768
Good Scents IDrw1001661
General References
  1. Chandler RJ, Aswani V, Tsai MS, Falk M, Wehrli N, Stabler S, Allen R, Sedensky M, Kazazian HH, Venditti CP: Propionyl-CoA and adenosylcobalamin metabolism in Caenorhabditis elegans: evidence for a role of methylmalonyl-CoA epimerase in intermediary metabolism. Mol Genet Metab. 2006 Sep-Oct;89(1-2):64-73. Epub 2006 Jul 14. [PubMed:16843692 ]
  2. Silwood CJ, Lynch E, Claxson AW, Grootveld MC: 1H and (13)C NMR spectroscopic analysis of human saliva. J Dent Res. 2002 Jun;81(6):422-7. [PubMed:12097436 ]
  3. Somerma S, Lassus A, Salde L: Assessment of atrophy of human skin caused by corticosteroids using chamber occlusion and suction blister techniques. Acta Derm Venereol. 1984;64(1):41-5. [PubMed:6203280 ]
  4. Marala RB, Brown JA, Kong JX, Tracey WR, Knight DR, Wester RT, Sun D, Kennedy SP, Hamanaka ES, Ruggeri RB, Hill RJ: Zoniporide: a potent and highly selective inhibitor of human Na(+)/H(+) exchanger-1. Eur J Pharmacol. 2002 Sep 6;451(1):37-41. [PubMed:12223226 ]
  5. Lin SC, Bergles DE: Synaptic signaling between neurons and glia. Glia. 2004 Aug 15;47(3):290-8. [PubMed:15252819 ]
  6. Alekseev OM, Widgren EE, Richardson RT, O'Rand MG: Association of NASP with HSP90 in mouse spermatogenic cells: stimulation of ATPase activity and transport of linker histones into nuclei. J Biol Chem. 2005 Jan 28;280(4):2904-11. Epub 2004 Nov 8. [PubMed:15533935 ]
  7. Robertson MD, Bickerton AS, Dennis AL, Vidal H, Frayn KN: Insulin-sensitizing effects of dietary resistant starch and effects on skeletal muscle and adipose tissue metabolism. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Sep;82(3):559-67. [PubMed:16155268 ]
  8. Esposito BP, Faljoni-Alario A, de Menezes JF, de Brito HF, Najjar R: A circular dichroism and fluorescence quenching study of the interactions between rhodium(II) complexes and human serum albumin. J Inorg Biochem. 1999 May 30;75(1):55-61. [PubMed:10402677 ]
  9. Jeng JH, Chan CP, Ho YS, Lan WH, Hsieh CC, Chang MC: Effects of butyrate and propionate on the adhesion, growth, cell cycle kinetics, and protein synthesis of cultured human gingival fibroblasts. J Periodontol. 1999 Dec;70(12):1435-42. [PubMed:10632518 ]
  10. Christensen JK, Varming T, Ahring PK, Jorgensen TD, Nielsen EO: In vitro characterization of 5-carboxyl-2,4-di-benzamidobenzoic acid (NS3763), a noncompetitive antagonist of GLUK5 receptors. J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2004 Jun;309(3):1003-10. Epub 2004 Feb 25. [PubMed:14985418 ]
  11. Bintvihok A, Kositcharoenkul S: Effect of dietary calcium propionate on performance, hepatic enzyme activities and aflatoxin residues in broilers fed a diet containing low levels of aflatoxin B1. Toxicon. 2006 Jan;47(1):41-6. Epub 2005 Nov 18. [PubMed:16298407 ]
  12. Mayer B, Schumacher M, Brandstatter H, Wagner FS, Hermetter A: High-throughput fluorescence screening of antioxidative capacity in human serum. Anal Biochem. 2001 Oct 15;297(2):144-53. [PubMed:11673881 ]
  13. De Kanter R, De Jager MH, Draaisma AL, Jurva JU, Olinga P, Meijer DK, Groothuis GM: Drug-metabolizing activity of human and rat liver, lung, kidney and intestine slices. Xenobiotica. 2002 May;32(5):349-62. [PubMed:12065058 ]
  14. Ridge BD, Batt MD, Palmer HE, Jarrett A: The dansyl chloride technique for stratum corneum renewal as an indicator of changes in epidermal mitotic activity following topical treatment. Br J Dermatol. 1988 Feb;118(2):167-74. [PubMed:3348963 ]
  15. Koeppe RA, Frey KA, Snyder SE, Meyer P, Kilbourn MR, Kuhl DE: Kinetic modeling of N-[11C]methylpiperidin-4-yl propionate: alternatives for analysis of an irreversible positron emission tomography trace for measurement of acetylcholinesterase activity in human brain. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 1999 Oct;19(10):1150-63. [PubMed:10532640 ]
  16. Nguyen TB, Snyder SE, Kilbourn MR: Syntheses of carbon-11 labeled piperidine esters as potential in vivo substrates for acetylcholinesterase. Nucl Med Biol. 1998 Nov;25(8):761-8. [PubMed:9863564 ]
  17. Wendel U, Zass R, Leupold D: Contribution of odd-numbered fatty acid oxidation to propionate production in neonates with methylmalonic and propionic acidaemias. Eur J Pediatr. 1993 Dec;152(12):1021-3. [PubMed:8131803 ]
  18. Beutler KT, Pankewycz O, Brautigan DL: Equivalent uptake of organic and inorganic zinc by monkey kidney fibroblasts, human intestinal epithelial cells, or perfused mouse intestine. Biol Trace Elem Res. 1998 Jan;61(1):19-31. [PubMed:9498328 ]
  19. Harrison PT: Propionic acid and the phenomenon of rodent forestomach tumorigenesis: a review. Food Chem Toxicol. 1992 Apr;30(4):333-40. [PubMed:1628870 ]
  20. de Baulny HO, Benoist JF, Rigal O, Touati G, Rabier D, Saudubray JM: Methylmalonic and propionic acidaemias: management and outcome. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2005;28(3):415-23. [PubMed:15868474 ]
  21. Dionisi-Vici C, Deodato F, Roschinger W, Rhead W, Wilcken B: 'Classical' organic acidurias, propionic aciduria, methylmalonic aciduria and isovaleric aciduria: long-term outcome and effects of expanded newborn screening using tandem mass spectrometry. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2006 Apr-Jun;29(2-3):383-9. [PubMed:16763906 ]