a naturally occurring pentose sugar alcohol, c 5 h 12 o 5 , used as a sugar subst-tute.
contemporary examples

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(chem) an artificial sweetener produced from xylose and used esp in chewing gum. formula: ch2hoh(choh)3ch2oh
(zī’lĭ-tôl’, -tōl’)
a sweet white crystalline alcohol derived from xylose and used as a sugar subst-tute. chemical formula: c5h12o5.

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