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The term chromogen is applied in chemistry to a colourless (or weakly coloured) chemical compound that can be converted by chemical reaction into a compound which can be described as "coloured". There is no universally agreed definition of the term. Various dictionaries give the following definitions:
- A substance capable of conversion into a pigment or dye.
- Any substance that can become a pigment or coloring matter, a substance in organic fluids that forms colored compounds when oxidized, or a compound, not itself a dye, that can become a dye.
- Any substance, itself without color, giving origin to a coloring matter.
In biochemistry the term has a rather different meaning. The following are found in various dictionaries.
- A precursor of a biochemical pigment
- A pigment-producing microorganism
- Any of certain bacteria that produce a pigment
- A strongly pigmented or pigment-generating organelle, organ, or microorganism.
Applications in chemistry
Applications in biochemistry and medicine