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Succinic acid is a dicarboxylic acid with the chemical formula (CH2)2(CO2H)2. The name derives from Latin succinum, meaning amber. In living organisms, succinic acid takes the form of an anion, succinate, which has multiple biological roles as a metabolic intermediate being converted into fumarate by the enzyme succinate dehydrogenase in complex 2 of the electron transport chain which is involved in making ATP, and as a signaling molecule reflecting the cellular metabolic state.It is marketed as food additive E363.
Succinic acid can be produced via catalytic hydrogenation of maleic acid or maleic anhydride, a process that is both expensive and harmful to the environment. It could also be produced via fermentation.
It is a common organic acid, which can be used in many food, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries as a precursor to generate many chemicals such as solvents, perfumes, lacquers, plasticizer, dyes, and photographic chemicals. Succinic acid is also used as an antibiotic and curative agent.
Succinate is a product of substrate-level phosphorylation materialized in the CAC; it is involved in a macrophage-specific metabolic pathway generating itaconate, and is also a downstream product of the α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex, a heavily regulated multi-subunit complex.