Definition of guaiacol in English:



mass nounChemistry
  • An oily yellow liquid with a penetrating odour, obtained by distilling wood tar or guaiac, used as a flavouring and an expectorant.

    Alternative name: o-methoxyphenol; chemical formula: HOC₆H₄OCH₃

    • ‘The two main synthetic sources of synthetic vanillin are from guaiacol (chemical industry) and from lignin (paper industry).’
    • ‘Activities of unspecific peroxidases were also measured using guaiacol as the substrate (not shown).’
    • ‘These changes were associated with decreased activities of superoxide dismutase and guaiacol peroxidases and contents of ascorbate and glutathione.’
    • ‘Its synthetic counterpart, made from guaiacol or eugenol, is used in artificial vanillas.’
    • ‘Glyceryl ether of guaiacol, commonly known as guaifenesin, is present in multiple cough and cold preparations.’


Mid 19th century: from guaiacum + -ol.