Lecithin (UK: /ˈlɛsɪθɪn/, US: /ˈlɛsəθɪn/, from the Greek lekithos "yolk ") is a generic term to designate any group of yellow-brownish fatty substances occurring in animal and plant tissues which are amphiphilic – they attract both water and fatty substances (and so are both hydrophilic and lipophilic ), and are used for smoothing food textures, emulsifying, homogenizing liquid mixtures, and repelling sticking materials.
Lecithin cholesterol acyltransferase deficiency is a disorder of lipoprotein metabolism. The disease has two forms: Familial LCAT deficiency, in which there is complete LCAT deficiency, and Fish-eye disease, in which there is a partial deficiency.
Hydroxylated lecithin is chemically modified lecithin. It is made by treating lecithin with hydrogen peroxide and an organic acid such as acetic or lactic acid. In the process, some of the organic acid becomes peroxy acid. The peroxy acid reacts with olefins in the fatty acid side chains creating intermediate epoxides. The epoxides react further with water, organic acid, or peroxy acid, to ultimately form vicinal diols. Because the natural fatty acid olefins have (Z)-configurations, the resulting vicinal diols have anti stereochemical configurations.