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chelating agents

chelating agents kē´lātĭng [key]. Certain organic compounds are capable of forming coordinate bonds (see chemical bond ) with metals through two or more atoms of the organic compound such organic compounds are called chelating agents. The compound formed by a chelating agent and a metal is called a chelate. A chelating agent that has two coordinating atoms is called bidentate one that has three, tridentate and so on. EDTA, or ethylenediaminetetraacetate, ( O 2CH 2) 2NCH 2CH 2N(CH 2CO 2 ) 2, is a common hexadentate chelating agent. Chlorophyll is a chelate that consists of a magnesium ion joined with a complex chelating agent heme, part of the hemoglobin in blood, is an iron chelate. Chelating agents are important in textile dyeing, water softening, and enzyme deactivation and as bacteriocides.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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