Polyethylene glycol (PEG) is a versatile, water-soluble polymer that belongs to the class of polyether compounds. It is formed by the polymerization of ethylene oxide, resulting in a chain of repeating ethylene glycol units. PEG is available in various molecular weights, with each weight corresponding to a different average number of ethylene glycol units in the chain.
PEG is a clear, odorless, and viscous liquid or solid, depending on its molecular weight.
PEG is extensively used in the pharmaceutical industry. It serves as a solubilizing agent, improving the solubility of poorly soluble drugs. PEG is also used as a base or vehicle for various dosage forms such as creams, ointments, suppositories, and oral liquids. It can enhance drug absorption, stability, and bioavailability.
2. Personal Care Products:
PEG is utilized in a variety of personal care products, including cosmetics, skincare items, hair care products, and toothpaste. It acts as a moisturizer, emulsifier, and thickening agent. PEG helps to improve the texture, spread ability, and stability of these products.
3. Industrial Applications:
PEG finds application in various industrial processes. It is used as a lubricant, antistatic agent, and plasticizer. PEG is also employed as a dispersant and emulsion stabilizer in paints, coatings, and adhesives.
4. Food and Beverages:
PEG is approved for use in food and beverages as a food additive. It is employed as a thickening agent, stabilizer, and humectant. PEG can enhance the texture, mouthfeel, and shelf life of products such as ice cream, candies, baked goods, and beverages.
PEG is utilized in agriculture for seed coating, as it can improve seed germination and moisture retention. It is also employed as a carrier for pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers.