Chemistry 2510 Introduction to Experimental Organic Chemistry Fall 2008
Isolation of L-(-) Carvone from Spearmint Oil: An Exercise in Column and
: You need to summarize your experimental plan in your lab
notebook. Be sure to include a table of all reagents and compounds that will be used in
Be sure to record any observations during the laboratory.
You must record exactly how much of the starting materials you started with and the
weight of the isolated product.
Results and Conclusions
: Separate the components of spearmint oil, evaluate the
effectiveness of the separation, and ascertain purity of the components.
Technique 5, Simple Distillation, pp 77-92, Technique 11, Column
Chromatography, pp 119-131, Technique 12, Thin-Layer Chromatography, pp 133—140,
and Technique 15, IR Spectroscopy, pp 163-178.
Spearmint oil is the natural product isolated from the flowering tops of
through steam distillation. The familiar oil is used as a flavoring
agent in toothpaste, chewing gum, mouth fresheners, and cosmetics. In addition,
there are some claims among naturopathic practitioners that spearmint oil may
have therapeutic value in treating asthma, exhaustion, fever, flatulence, headache,
nausea, and vertigo. The astute scientist must view the therapeutic use of
spearmint oil with much skepticism until further scientific research can verify or
dispel such claims. Spearmint oil is composed of many volatile organic
compounds, but the three main components present are L-(-)-carvone, (+)-
limonene, and (1R, 2R, 4R)-dihydrocarveol, shown below:
(1R, 2R, 4R)-Dihydrocarveol