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lactose

Pronunciation: lak'tos

Definition: A reducing disaccharide present in mammalian milk and consisting of a galactosyl residue linked B1,4 to a glucopyranose; obtained from cow's milk and used in modified milk preparation, in food for infants and convalescents, and in pharmaceutical preparations; in large doses, acts as an osmotic diuretic and as a laxative. Human milk contains 6.7% lactose.

Synonym(s): milk sugar, saccharum lactis

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© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.
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