Triple Helix of Scleroglucan in Dilute Aqueous Sodium Hydroxide


A sample of scleroglucan, a commercially available, water-soluble polysac-charide, and its sonicated fragment were investigated by chemical analysis and by light scattering and viscometry with water containing 0.01 N sodium hydroxide (NaOH), dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), and water + DMSO mixtures at 25°C as the solvents. From the chemical analysis, this polysaccharide was found to be a β-1,3-D-glucan consisting essentially of the same repeating units as found for schizophyllan. The light scattering and viscosity measurements yielded the following results: (1) The weight-average molecular weights Mw of the two scleroglucan samples in 0.01 N NaOH are roughly three times as large as those in DMSO, (2) the radii of gyration ‹S21/2 and the intrinsic viscosities [η] in 0.01 N NaOH are close to those of the rodlike triple helices of schizophyllan with the same Mw in 0.01 N NaOH, (3) the values of ‹S21/2/Mw1/2 and [η]/Mw1/2 for the scleroglucan samples in DMSO are approximately constant, and the second virial coefficients in this solvent are almost zero, and (4) [η] of the sonicated sample in water + DMSO mixtures undergoes an almost discontinuous decrease at about 87 wt% DMSO at which the schizophyllan triple helix dissociates to single chains. Based on these results and structural information, it was concluded that the scleroglucan studied exists in 0.01 N NaOH as a triple helix similar to that of schizophyllan in either pure water or 0.01 N NaOH, while it is dispersed in DMSO as a single chain and behaves like an unperturbed flexible chain.


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Yanaki, T., Kojima, T. & Norisuye, T. Triple Helix of Scleroglucan in Dilute Aqueous Sodium Hydroxide. Polym J 13, 1135–1143 (1981).

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  • Polysaccharide
  • Scleroglucan
  • Schizophyllan
  • Triple Helix
  • Chemical Structure
  • Molecular Weight
  • Radius of Gyration
  • Intrinsic Viscosity

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