Salicylic acid is a white, crystalline chemical substance that is very soluble in water. It is produced by Salicin's metabolism, an anti-inflammatory compound that is obtained from willow bark. Salicylic acid can be created synthetically or organically from specific plants. It can be created spontaneously by the biosynthesis of the amino acid phenylalanine, which is present in several plants. In a synthetic process, sodium phenolate is treated with carbon dioxide at high pressure and high temperature to form sodium salicylate, which is then acidified with sulfuric acid to make salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is a versatile substance with analgesic and anti-inflammatory actions.
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