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L-Tartrate is a salt form of tartaric acid.

Tartaric acid is a white crystalline diprotic aldaric acid. It occurs naturally in many plants, particularly grapes, bananas, and tamarinds, is commonly combined with baking soda to function as a leavening agent in recipes, and is one of the main acids found in wine. It is added to other foods to give a sour taste, and is used as an antioxidant.

Salts of tartaric acid are known as tartrates. It is a dihydroxyl derivative of succinic acid.

Tartaric acid was first isolated from potassium tartrate, known to the ancients as tartar, circa 800 AD, by the alchemist Jabir ibn Hayyan. The modern process was developed in 1769 by the Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele.
Tartaric acid played an important role in the discovery of chemical chirality. This property of tartaric acid was first observed in 1832 by Jean Baptiste Biot, who observed its ability to rotate polarized light. Louis Pasteur continued this research in 1847 by investigating the shapes of ammonium sodium tartrate crystals, which he found to be chiral. By manually sorting the differently shaped crystals under magnification, Pasteur was the first to produce a pure sample of levotartaric acid.
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NCI Drug Dictionary (Added on 9/5/2013 4:14:00 PM)

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