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Adipocere (saponification)

  1. Damp warm environment favors it (cold delays it)
  2. Mechanism: hydrolysis and hydrogenation of pre-existing fat (hence formed first in subcutaneous tissues) by intrinsic lipases.
  3. cl. perfringens is also responsible.
  4. It contains: Palmitic acid, Oleic acid, Stearic acid, Hydroxystearic acid
  5. Ammoniacal odor
  6. When fresh -  soft, moist, whitish and translucent resembling RANCID BUTTER *
  7. When old – dry, hard, cracked, yellowish and brittle.
  8. In temperate countries, shortest time taken is 3 weeks in summer.
  9. In India, within 3 days.
  10. Fetus < 7 months do not show this change

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