phthalate

[ thal-eyt, fthal- ]
/ ˈθæl eɪt, ˈfθæl- /

noun Chemistry.

a salt or ester of phthalic acid: phthalates are used mainly, and profusely, as plasticizers and solvents, but growing concern over their environmental impact has led to interest in developing biological alternatives.

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Origin of phthalate

First recorded in 1860–65; phthal(ic) + -ate2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for phthalate

phthalate
/ (ˈθælɪt, ˈfθæl-) /

noun

a salt or ester of phthalic acid. Esters are commonly used as plasticizers in PVC; when ingested they can cause kidney and liver damage
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for phthalate

phthalate
[ thălāt′, fthăl- ]

Any of a group of esters of phthalic acid, widely used in manufacturing plastics and as a synthetic additive in perfumes and cosmetics, that have been linked to reproductive and hormonal abnormalities in humans and other animals.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.