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    Synonyms: Cholesterin; cholesterolum.

    Description:  Cholesterol occurs as white or faintly yellow, almost odorless, pearly leaflets, needles, powder, or granules. On prolonged exposure to light and air, cholesterol acquires a yellow to tan color.

    Chemical Name: Cholest-5-en-3b-ol

    • Cholesterol is used in cosmetics and topical pharmaceutical formulations at concentrations of 0.3–5.0% w/w as an emulsifying agent.

    • It imparts water-absorbing power to an ointment and has emollient activity. Cholesterol also has a physiological role.

    • It is the major sterol of the higher animals, and it is found in all body tissues, especially in the brain and spinal cord. It is also the main constituent of gallstones

    Cholesterol is precipitated by digitonin.

    Cholesterol is generally regarded as an essentially nontoxic and nonirritant material at the levels employed as an excipient. It has, however, exhibited experimental teratogenic and reproductive effects, and mutation data have been reported.

    Observe normal precautions appropriate to the circumstances and quantity of material handled. Rubber or plastic gloves, eye protection, and a respirator are recommended. May be harmful following inhalation or ingestion of large quantities, or over prolonged periods of time, owing to the possible involvement of cholesterol in atherosclerosis and gallstones. May be irritant to the eyes. When heated to decomposition, cholesterol emits acrid smoke and irritating fumes.

    Lanolin; lanolin alcohols; lanolin hydrous.