• M. R. Porter


The word amphoteric is derived from the Greek amphi meaning both and used to describe surfactants which have both a positive (cationic) and a negative (anionic) group. Sometimes the phrase ampholytic is used. The nomenclature of some amphoterics has been confused in the past, partly due to mistakes in the original chemical structures, and, more recently, due to retention of the word betaine for products which are strictly not amphoteric. The main categories of amphoterics are as follows.


Acrylic Acid Mixed Micelle Quaternary Ammonium Compound Amine Oxide Ether Sulphate 


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  1. Amphoterics International (1987) European Patent 0, 214, 868.Google Scholar
  2. Scher Chemicals (1983) The chemistry and applications of amido-amines, presented to the Society of Cosmetic Chemists Annual Seminar, Cincinatti, OH.Google Scholar
  3. Sykes, G. (1965) Disinfection and Sterilisation, 2nd edn., pp. 377–378.Google Scholar
  4. Verdiccho, R.J. and Walts, J.M. (1976) US Patent 3,950,417 to Johnson & Johnson.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. R. Porter
    • 1
  1. 1.Maurice R. Porter & AssociatesCardiffUK

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