Mace. Macis. N. F. IV.

Related entry: Myristica - Oil of Myristica

Mace. Macis. N. F. IV.—"The arillode of the seed of Myristica fragrans Houttuyn (Fam. Myristicaceae)." N. F. IV. Mace was official in the U. S. Pharmacopoeia 1890, but was omitted in subsequent editions. It has very properly been admitted to the National Formulary IV. It is described as follows: "In narrow bands, 25 mm. or more in length, somewhat branched and lobed above, united into broader bands; yellowish to brownish-orange, and oily. Odor fragrant; taste warm and aromatic.

"The powder is orange-buff to orange-brown. Mounted in water and examined microscopically, the powder exhibits elongated epidermal cells; parenchyma containing very small amylodextrin granules, which are colored red-brown by iodine T.S.; large oil cells the contents of which are not greatly changed in color on the addition of alkali.

"Powdered False Mace or Bombay Mace is yellow-brown to deep-brown in color and deficient in odor and taste. When mounted in water and examined microscopically it exhibits flattened, thick-walled epidermal cells and oil cells much more numerous than in true Mace and containing an orange-red resinous substance which is dissolved by alkalies forming a blood-red liquid.

"Moisten Mace with hydrochloric acid; no greenish color is produced (difference from and absence of the arillode of Myristica malabarica Lamarck or Bombay Mace).

"Add potassium chromate T.S. to an alcoholic extract of Mace (1 in 10); the precipitate formed is yellow and does not change to red on standing, nor does the solution develop a red coloration (difference from and absence of Bombay Mace).

"Saturate a piece of filter paper with an alcoholic tincture of Mace (1 in 10), and add one drop of potassium hydroxide T.S.; no blood-red coloration is produced (difference from and absence of Bombay Mace).

"Mace yields not less than 8 per cent. of volatile ether extract, and not less than 20 per cent. nor more than 30 per cent. of non-volatile ether extract.

"Mace yields not more than 3 per cent. of ash which is almost completely soluble in hydrochloric acid" N. F. IV. Mace is inferior when it ia brittle, less than usually divided, whitish or pale yellow, or with little taste and odor. The presence of starch granules or other microscopic particles different from those spoken of in powdered mace is proof of adulteration. Mace contains from 7 to 9 per cent. of a volatile oil, the greater portion of which consists of pinene, along with which is some myristicin, C12H14O3. Wallach separated two odorous fixed oils; one yellow, soluble in ether, insoluble in boiling alcohol; the other red, soluble in alcohol and ether in every proportion.

The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.