All of the methods for the quantitative determination of pentoses and pentosans in agricultural products are based upon the conversion of pentose into furfural by distillation with a mineral acid, preferably hydrochloric, and subsequent estimation of furfural in the distillate by means of a suitable reagent. Günther, Chalmot and Tollens titrated the furfural with phenylhydrazine, using aniline acetate paper as an indicator. Stone made use of the same reaction, but used Fehling's solution to determine the excess of phenylhydrazine. Later, Flint and Tollens showed that this titration method was not accurate, on account of the levulinic acid resulting from the decomposition of hexoses, as well as the instability of the standard phenylhydrazine acetate reagent used.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1916 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Dox, Arthur W. and Plaisance, G. P.
"A Comparison of Barbituric Acid, Thiobarbituric Acid and Malonylguanidine as Quantitative Precipitants for Furfural,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 23(1), 41-50.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol23/iss1/10