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Record Information
StatusExpected but not Quantified
Creation Date2012-09-11 17:41:44 UTC
Update Date2019-07-23 06:08:17 UTC
Secondary Accession Numbers
  • HMDB31229
Metabolite Identification
Common NameEthyl formate
DescriptionEthyl formate, also known as areginal or ethyl methanoate, belongs to the class of organic compounds known as carboxylic acid esters. These are carboxylic acid derivatives in which the carbon atom from the carbonyl group is attached to an alkyl or an aryl moiety through an oxygen atom (forming an ester group). Ethyl formate is an extremely weak basic (essentially neutral) compound (based on its pKa). Ethyl formate is an alcohol, bitter, and cognac tasting compound. Outside of the human body, ethyl formate has been detected, but not quantified in, several different foods, such as citrus, pineapples, apples, fruits, and pomes. This could make ethyl formate a potential biomarker for the consumption of these foods. It occurs naturally in the body of ants and in the stingers of bees. Ethyl formate has been identified in dust clouds in an area of the Milky Way galaxy called Sagittarius B2. Ethyl formate has the characteristic smell of rum and is also partially responsible for the flavor of raspberries. The U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) also considers a time-weighted average of 100 ppm over an eight-hour period as the recommended exposure limit. Ethyl formate is an ester formed when ethanol (an alcohol) reacts with formic acid (a carboxylic acid). According to the U.S Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), ethyl formate can irritate eyes, skin, mucous membranes, and the respiratory system of humans and other animals; it is also a central nervous system depressant. It is among 50 molecular species identified using the 30 metre IRAM radiotelescope. In industry, it is used as a solvent for cellulose nitrate, cellulose acetate, oils, and greases.
Carboxylic acid oxaethaneChEBI
Ethyl formic esterChEBI
Ethyl methanoateChEBI
Ethyle (formiate d')ChEBI
Formiato de etiloChEBI
Formic acid, ethyl esterChEBI
Formic etherChEBI
Carboxylate oxaethaneGenerator
Ethyl methanoic acidGenerator
Ethyle (formiic acid d')Generator
Formate, ethyl esterGenerator
Ethyl formic acidGenerator
Ethyl ester OF formic acidHMDB
Ethylformic esterHMDB
Formic acid ethyl esterHMDB
Chemical FormulaC3H6O2
Average Molecular Weight74.0785
Monoisotopic Molecular Weight74.036779436
IUPAC Nameethyl formate
Traditional Nameethyl formate
CAS Registry Number109-94-4
InChI Identifier
Chemical Taxonomy
Description belongs to the class of organic compounds known as carboxylic acid esters. These are carboxylic acid derivatives in which the carbon atom from the carbonyl group is attached to an alkyl or an aryl moiety through an oxygen atom (forming an ester group).
KingdomOrganic compounds
Super ClassOrganic acids and derivatives
ClassCarboxylic acids and derivatives
Sub ClassCarboxylic acid derivatives
Direct ParentCarboxylic acid esters
Alternative Parents
  • Carboxylic acid ester
  • Monocarboxylic acid or derivatives
  • Organic oxygen compound
  • Organic oxide
  • Hydrocarbon derivative
  • Organooxygen compound
  • Carbonyl group
  • Aliphatic acyclic compound
Molecular FrameworkAliphatic acyclic compounds
External Descriptors

Route of exposure:


Biological location:


Industrial application:

Physical Properties
Experimental Properties
Melting Point-80.5 °CNot Available
Boiling PointNot AvailableNot Available
Water Solubility88.2 mg/mL at 25 °CNot Available
LogP0.23Not Available
Predicted Properties
Water Solubility305 g/LALOGPS
pKa (Strongest Basic)-6.8ChemAxon
Physiological Charge0ChemAxon
Hydrogen Acceptor Count1ChemAxon
Hydrogen Donor Count0ChemAxon
Polar Surface Area26.3 ŲChemAxon
Rotatable Bond Count2ChemAxon
Refractivity17.67 m³·mol⁻¹ChemAxon
Polarizability7.32 ųChemAxon
Number of Rings0ChemAxon
Rule of FiveYesChemAxon
Ghose FilterNoChemAxon
Veber's RuleYesChemAxon
MDDR-like RuleNoChemAxon
Spectrum TypeDescriptionSplash KeyView
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-af41fd3c13c388901951Spectrum
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-eb53d7dda3275b010878Spectrum
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-639550e9e1c74fbbccb1Spectrum
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-af41fd3c13c388901951Spectrum
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-eb53d7dda3275b010878Spectrum
GC-MSGC-MS Spectrum - EI-B (Non-derivatized)splash10-0059-9000000000-639550e9e1c74fbbccb1Spectrum
Predicted GC-MSPredicted GC-MS Spectrum - GC-MS (Non-derivatized) - 70eV, Positivesplash10-004i-9000000000-4e7fec3a3563b3646dacSpectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Positivesplash10-004i-9000000000-f332b78fc3540f1d8cbaSpectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Positivesplash10-004j-9000000000-a60a39738e3d9ba3b245Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Positivesplash10-002b-9000000000-f3f53bc8df222e96fabaSpectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Negativesplash10-00di-9000000000-17cb369d3f239dfc1d35Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Negativesplash10-00di-9000000000-bef1fd03fe4be52d7d20Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Negativesplash10-0006-9000000000-53f92a088cfd840983efSpectrum
1D NMR1H NMR SpectrumNot AvailableSpectrum
1D NMR13C NMR SpectrumNot AvailableSpectrum
Biological Properties
Cellular Locations
  • Cytoplasm
  • Extracellular
Biospecimen LocationsNot Available
Tissue LocationsNot Available
Normal Concentrations
Not Available
Abnormal Concentrations
Not Available
Associated Disorders and Diseases
Disease ReferencesNone
Associated OMIM IDsNone
DrugBank IDNot Available
Phenol Explorer Compound IDNot Available
FooDB IDFDB003253
KNApSAcK IDNot Available
Chemspider ID7734
KEGG Compound IDNot Available
BioCyc IDNot Available
BiGG IDNot Available
Wikipedia LinkEthyl formate
METLIN IDNot Available
PubChem Compound8025
PDB IDNot Available
ChEBI ID52342
Food Biomarker OntologyNot Available
VMH IDNot Available
MarkerDB ID
Synthesis ReferenceNot Available
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)Download (PDF)
General References
  1. (). Yannai, Shmuel. (2004) Dictionary of food compounds with CD-ROM: Additives, flavors, and ingredients. Boca Raton: Chapman & Hall/CRC.. .