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Crocin Molecule


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Crocin is a natural carotenoid chemical compound that is found in the flowers crocus and gardenia. It is the diester formed from the disaccharide gentiobiose and the dicarboxylic acid crocetin. It has a deep red color and forms crystals with a melting point of 186 °C. When dissolved in water, it forms an orange solution.

Crocin is the chemical ingredient primarily responsible for the color of saffron.

Crocin has been shown to be a potent neuronal antioxidant. It has also been shown to have an antiproliferative action against cancer cells in vitro. Limited evidence suggests possible antidepressant properties of crocin in mice and humans. One study reports aphrodisiac properties in male rats at very high doses.

The structure of Crocin is shown below.

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