Hexeneuronic acids (HexA) are a major cause of discoloration (yellowing/brightness reversion) in pulps from xylan-containing wood, being generated from the xylan’s 4-O-methylglucuronic acid residues. The HexA-derived chromophores, whose identification and structure confirmation have been described in the previous part of this series (Rosenau et al. in Cellulose, 2017), were subject to conditions of peroxide bleaching, i.e. treatment with hydrogen peroxide in alkaline medium. These chromophores, ladder-type oligomers of mixed aromatic-quinoid and mixed furanoid-benzoid character, are degraded relatively quickly to one major product, 2,5-dihydroxy-[1,4]-benzoquinone (DHBQ), and a minor component, 2,5-dihydroxyacetophenone (DHA). These two compounds, which have already been identified as two of the three key chromophores (besides 5,8-dihydroxy-[1,4]-naphthoquinone, DHNQ) in aged cellulosics, are potent chromophores themselves and are subsequently more slowly degraded to non-colored degradation products, according to pathways already described in previous parts of this series. The occurrence of DHBQ and DHA in the bleaching treatment of the HexA-derived chromophores establishes the link between HexA chemistry and the key chromophore classes of residual chromophores found in aged cellulosic materials.
Cellulose – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 13, 2017
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