In recent times, cyclodextrins have been making news. Consider the following statements with this reference:

1. Cyclodextrins are ring-like compounds formed of sugar molecules

2. They have been raising concerns related to public health

Which among the above is / are correct statements?

Answer: [C] Both 1 & 2

Cyclodextrins are a family of ring-like compounds formed of sugar molecules. Typical Cyclodextrins have a ring of 6-8 glucose monomers. They are produced from starch by an enzymatic conversion and are used in food, pharmaceutical, chemical industries, agriculture engineering etc. they easily form complexes with hydrophobic compounds as they are hydrophilic outside. They are in high demand in pharmaceutical and food industry. In pharmaceutical applications they aid to solubilise hydrophobic drugs and crosslink to form polymers for drug delivery. They also have widespread environmental applications as they can immobilize various heavy metals which degrade the environment; helpful in treatment of sewage sludge etc.

In recent times, they have been in news in relation to the Powdered Alcohol. Powdered alcohol or Palcohol, is a dried form of alcohol which can be mixed with water to create liquid form of alcohol. Chemically, it is said to be 5 X stronger than the liquid version and hence has raised concerns in many parts of society. It is based Cyclodextrins.

This question is a part of GKToday's Integrated IAS General Studies Module