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A Biologically Active Fatty-acid in Malvaceae


IT has been known for many years that the ingestion by hens of malvaceous plants or crude fats derived from such plants gives rise to pink ‘whites’ in stored eggs1. Schaible and Bandemer2 showed that the pink discoloration was caused by iron diffusing from the yolk and chelating with the conalbumin of the white. The disorder is accompanied by a putty-like condition of the yolks when the eggs are cold, and affected yolks have a higher water content than normal. The pH values of the yolk and white, normally 6.5 and 9.0 respectively, tend to converge. Schaible and Bandemer2 suggested that the effects of a diet containing malvaceous products could be explained by an increased permeability of the vitelline membrane surrounding the yolk.


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SHENSTONE, F., VICKERY, J. A Biologically Active Fatty-acid in Malvaceae. Nature 177, 94 (1956).

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