Chemical information

Chemical formula: Ksiloze˙; Ksyloosi; Ksyloza; Wood Sugar; Xilosa; Xilóz; Xylos; Xylosa; C5H10O5 = 150.1.
CAS — 58-86-6; 6763-34-4.


In Eur. and US.

Ph. Eur. 6.2

(Xylose). A white or almost white crystalline powder or colourless needles. Freely soluble in water; soluble in hot alcohol.

USP 31

(Xylose). Odourless, colourless needles or white crystalline powder. Very soluble in water; slightly soluble in alcohol. Store in airtight containers at a temperature of 15° to 30°.


Xylose has been used for the investigation of absorption from the gastrointestinal tract. In the absence of malabsorption, about 35% of a 5-g oral dose and about 25% of a 25-g oral dose are reported to be excreted in the urine within 5 hours. It has been given by mouth, usually in a dose of either 5 or 25 g, with up to 700 mL of water. The amount recovered in the urine is estimated and used to assess any malabsorption. Adjustment may have to be made for renal impairment. Xylose may cause some gastrointestinal discomfort with large doses. Other drugs may affect the absorption of xylose and interfere with the xylose test. The test has been adapted to use blood-xylose concentrations.
1. Craig RM, Ehrenpreis ED. D-xylose testing. J Clin Gastroenterol 1999; 29: 143–50.


Preparations that contain, or are metabolised to, xylose may interfere with the results from glucose tests. Overestimation of glucose results may mask hypoglycaemia, resulting in the inappropriate use of insulin.1,2
1. Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. Medical device alert: ref MDA/2007/058 issued 19 July 2007. Available at: http://www.mhra.gov.uk/PrintPreview/PublicationSP/ CON2031807 (accessed 01/07/08
2. FDA. Important safety information on interference with blood glucose measurement following use of parenteral maltose/parenteral galactose/oral xylose-containing products (issued November 2005). Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cber/ safety/maltose110405.htm (accessed 01/07/08)
Published May 08, 2019.