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Encyclopedia > Nitrites

In inorganic chemistry nitrites are salts of nitrous acid HNO2. They contain the nitrite ion NO2-. Nitrites of the alkali and alkaline earth metals can be synthesized by reacting an mixture of nitrogen monoxide NO and nitrogen dioxide NO2 with the corresponding metal hydroxide solution. Other nitrites are available through the reduction of the corresponding nitrates.

Sodium nitrite is used for the curing of meat because it prevents bacterial growth and, in a reaction with the meat's myoglobin, gives the product a desirable dark red color. Because of the toxicity of nitrite (lethal dose of nitrite for humans is about 22 mg per kg body weight), the maximum allowed nitrite concentration in meat products is 200 ppm. Under certain conditions, especially during overcooking, nitrites in meat can react with degradation products of amino acids, forming nitrosamines, which are known carcinogens.

In organic chemistry, nitrites mean the esters of nitrous acid. They possess the general formula R-O-N=O, R being an aryl or alkyl group. Amyl nitrite is used in medicine for the treatment of heart diseases.

  Results from FactBites:
Nitrite - Koi Club of San Diego (654 words)
Nitrite, NO -N, measured in parts per million (ppm), is the second chemical measurement made to determine the "health" of the biologic converter.
A low nitrite reading combined with a significant ammonia reading indicates the ammonia-nitrite biologic converter action is not established, while a low ammonia reading with a detectable nitrite reading indicates that the nitrite-nitrate bacterial conversion activity is not yet working.
Source: Nitrite is produced by autotrophic bacteria combining oxygen and ammonia in the bio-converter and to a lesser degree on the walls of the pond.
Drugs - Amyl, Butyl or Isobutyl Nitrite, Nitrates, Poppers (664 words)
Amyl/butyl nitrite (poppers) is a powerful drug that can give you an almighty burst of dizzy energy for a couple of minutes.
The rush kicks in immediately, and for a few moments you'll feel like the bass drum has got inside your head, the lights have been turned up to a zillion watts and your heart is attempting a solo flight.
First produced in 1857 as a treatment for angina, amyl nitrite evaporates at room temperature.
  More results at FactBites »



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