A New Micromethod for the Estimation of Cellulose


THE only recorded micromethod for the estimation of bacterial cellulose is that of Schramm and Hestrin1, which requires the acetolysis of a previously purified sample and careful neutralization of the hydrolysate with sodium hydroxide prior to colorimetric estimation of the reducing power of this neutralized solution. This method is rather long—a disadvantage when several samples are to be assayed—and the neutralization step is critical. A micromethod has now been devised which halves the time taken for analysis, by eliminating acetolysis, hydrolysis and neutralization. This new method is an adaptation of that reported by Mendel, Kemp and Myers2 for estimating blood glucose. These workers found that their method was also applicable to such polysaccharides as starch and glycogen. Although cellulose is much more difficult to hydrolyse than either of these polysaccharides, adaptation of their method has proved successful in estimating cellulose directly without initial hydrolytic treatment.

Access options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Schramm, M., and Hestrin, S., Biochem. J., 56, 163 (1954).

  2. 2

    Mendel, B., Kemp, A., and Myers, D. K., Biochem. J., 56, 639 (1954).

Download references

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

DEARING, G. A New Micromethod for the Estimation of Cellulose. Nature 179, 579 (1957) doi:10.1038/179579a0

Download citation

Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.