|IUPAC name||octanoic acid|
3D model (JSmol)
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|Except where noted otherwise, data are given for|
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)
Infobox disclaimer and references
Caprylic acid is the common name for the eight-carbon straight chain fatty acid known by the systematic name octanoic acid. It is found naturally in coconuts and breast milk. It is an oily liquid with a slightly unpleasant rancid taste that is minimally soluble in water.
Caprylic acid is used commercially in the production of esters used in perfumery and also in the manufacture of dyes.
Caprylic acid is known to have anti-fungal properties, and is often recommended by nutritionists for the treatment of candidiasis. According to nutritionist Erica White, caprylic acid is excellent for dealing with candida in the intestines, which are frequently colonized by candida.
Caprylic acid is also used in the treatment of some bacterial infections. Due to its relatively short chain length it has no difficulty in penetrating fatty cell wall membranes, hence its effectiveness in combating certain lipid-coated bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus and various species of Streptococcus. 
Caprylic acid, aka, octanoic acid, must be covalently linked to the serine residue at the 3-position of ghrelin, specifically, it must acylate the -OH group, for ghrelin to have its hunger-stimulating action on the feeding centers of the hypothalamus, though other fatty acids may have similar effects.
- Nair MK, Joy J, Vasudevan P, Hinckley L, Hoagland TA, Venkitanarayanan KS. Antibacterial effect of caprylic acid and monocaprylin on major bacterial mastitis pathogens. J Dairy Sci. 2005 Oct;88(10):3488-95.