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A red carotenoid pigment, C40H52O4, produced by certain bacteria, fungi, and green algae and found in wild salmon, trout, and some crustaceans. It is used in animal feed to impart color and as an antioxidant.

[From New Latin Astacus, former genus name of Homarus gammarus, the species of lobster from which the pigment was first extracted (from Latin astacus, lobster, from Greek astakos, variant of ostakos; see ost- in Indo-European roots) + xanth(o)- + -in.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Astaxanthine secured apoptotic death of PC12 cells induced by beta-amyloid peptide 25-35: its molecular action targets.
We have studied the antioxidation effects of various compounds, such as the triterpene celastrol (Sassa et al., 1990, 1994), the bisbenzylisoquinoline alkaloid cepharanthine (Kogure et al., 1999), the xanthophyll astaxanthine (Goto et al., 2001), the pungent ingredient of red pepper known as capsaicin (Kogure et al., 2002) and artificial pigment cyanine dyes (Kogure et al., 1998), in order to develop antioxidants for medical use.