Dictionary > Undecylenic acid

Undecylenic acid

Undecylenic acid (chemical formula: C11H20O2) is a colorless, unsaturated fatty acid. It is naturally occurring. In humans, it is present in small amounts in sweat. It is produced artificially though for its medical and industrial uses. In medicine, it is used in treating fungal skin diseases (e.g. athlete’s foot, ringworm, and tinea cruris) and psoriasis. It is also used in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical drugs, cosmetics, perfumes, and other personal hygiene products. In the nylon industry, it is converted into 11-amionoundecanoic acid, which is an aminocarboxylic acid and a precursor to Nylon-11. It is also used in research studies as α,ω- (terminally functionalized) bifunctional agent where one of its functional groups binds with silicon-based biosensors and the other group for conjugating with biomolecules like proteins. Salts and esters of undecylenic acid are called undecylenates. Synonyms: undecenoic acid, zincundecate.


  1. Anneken, D. J., Both, S., Christoph, R., Fieg, G., Steinberner, U. & Westfechtel, A. (2006). “Fatty Acids” in Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Wiley-VCH, Weinheim. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1002/14356007.a10-245.pub2
  2. Moraillon, A., Gouget-Laemmel, A. C., Ozanam, F. & Chazalviel, J.-N. (2008). “Amidation of Monolayers on Silicon in Physiological Buffers: A Quantitative IR Study”. J. Phys. Chem. C. 112 (18): 7158–7167.

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