Pyruvic Acid
German Version

2-Oxopropionic acid, Acetylformic acid, C3H4O3 M 88,06 g/Mol
GHS-symbol: corrosive

Pyruvic acid is a liquid with a smell similar to acetic acid, whose derivatives are called Pyruvates. As α-Keto acid it has a central meaning as intermediate in the biological metabolism, especially in the alcoholic fermentation under anaerobic conditions.


In the body Pyruvic acid results from breaking down of glucose in a so-called glycolyse reaction, whereby additionally ATP and NADH are formed. For the further metabolism there are several possibilities:

    with sufficient oxygen (aerobe conditions) Acetyl Coenzyme A is formed, which leads to further ATP and NADH in the so-called Citrat Cyclus
  • as reversal of the glycolyse glucose can be reformed
  • by transamination the synthesis of the amino acid alanine occurs
  • under anaerobic conditions, in plants, mushrooms and some micro organisms ethanol is formed over the intermediate stage of acetaldehyde (ethanal)
  • in the animal organism in presence of Lactat Dehydrogenase and NADH Lactic acid is formed

With toxic cell damages Pyruvic acid is concentrated in serum and urine.

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Last Update: 11/04/2010 - IMPRINT - FAQ