Acetate - C2H3O2

What is Acetate?

Acetate is a chemical compound with a formula C2H3O2. It is also known as Acetate Ion or Monoacetate. It is a salt formed by the combination of acetic acid with alkaline, metallic, earthy, or nonmetallic or other bases.

The conversion of pyruvate to acetyl-coenzyme A is carried out with the help of an enzyme called pyruvate dehydrogenase. The acetyl-CoA is further converted to acetate in E. coli and simultaneously produces ATP by substrate-level phosphorylation. The entire process requires two enzymes viz acetate kinase and phosphate acetyltransferase.

acetyl-CoA + Phospate → acetyl-Phospate+CoA

acetyl-Phospate+ADP → acetate + ATP

Fermentation of acetate

Acetic acid undergoes dismutation reaction to generate carbon dioxide and methane.

CH3COO + H+ → CH4 + CO2 ΔG° = −36 kJ/mol

The reaction is carried out in the presence of catalyst methanogen archaea. One electron is transferred from the carboxylic group to the methyl group of acetic acid to generate carbon dioxide and methane gas.

Properties of Acetate (C2H3O2)



Molecular Weight of Acetate

59.044 g/mol

Monoisotopic Mass of Acetate

59.013 g/mol



Conjugate acid

Acetic acid

Structure Of Acetate (C2H3O2)

Structure Of Acetate

Uses Of Acetate (C2H3O2)

  • Acetate is used as a solvent in paints, inks, coatings.
  • Cellulose acetate is used eyeglass frame.
  • It is used in diapers.
  • Potassium acetate is used as a food preservative.
  • It is used in laboratories.
  • Aluminium acetate is used as an anti stringent.

The acetate anion is one from the carboxylate family. It is considered as a conjugate base of acetic acid. Acetic acid gets converted to acetate at a pH above 5.5. A common anion in biology where organisms utilize it in the form of acetyl coenzyme A. It is proposed that acetate produced by oxidizing ethanol is a key factor to cause hangovers.

Learn more about the chemical behaviour and importance of acetate (C2H3O2) with the expert faculties at BYJU’S.

Practise This Question

Neils Bohr gave an explanation about the stability of atom. Which of the following laws do you think is applied to the structure of atom?