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Arbutin is a glycoside and is the active principle of uva ursi and other plants. Arbutin has urinary disinfectant properties due to its hydrolysis to yield hydroquinone. Caution should be exercised in using arbutin because hydroquinone, in large quantities, is toxic and will produce symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, convulsions, and tinnitus. Arbutin can also cause death.

Leung, Albert Y. 1980. Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredient used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics. John Wiley and Sons, N Y. 409 pp.

Windholz, Martha, Susan Budavani, et. al. 1976. The Merck Index. Merck and Co., Inc. New Jersey.