Melamine, molecular model

Melamine, molecular model

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Caption: Melamine, molecular model. Computer artwork of a molecule of melamine (C3N6H6), an organic base with a high nitrogen content. Melamine and formaldehyde are the main components of the plastic known as melamine resin, a durable thermosetting plastic. Melamine is also a good flame retardant as it releases nitrogen (a relatively inert molecule) when burned, which smothers the flames. The nitrogen-rich compound has been used illegally to increase a food's apparent protein content. In China the additive was found in baby milk in 2008 and is believed to be responsible for severe renal problems and kidney stones.

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