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Use of the Extended Fujita method for representing the molecular weight and molecular weight distributions of native and processed oat beta-glucans

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Scientific Reports ; Volume 8:11809. p. 1–8. 2018

Channel, Guy A.; Adams, Gary G.; Lu, YuDong; Gillis, Richard B.; Dinu, Vlad; Grundy, Myriam; Bajka, Balazs H.; Butterworth, Peter J.; Ellis, Peter R.; Mackie, Alan; Ballance, Simon; Harding, Stephen Ernest

Beta 1–3, 1–4 glucans (“beta-glucans”) are one of the key components of the cell wall of cereals, complementing the main structural component cellulose. Beta-glucans are also an important source of soluble fibre in foods containing oats with claims of other beneficial nutritional properties such as plasma cholesterol lowering in humans. Key to the function of beta-glucans is their molecular weight and because of their high polydispersity – molecular weight distribution. Analytical ultracentrifugation provides a matrix-free approach (not requiring separation columns or media) to polymer molecular weight distribution determination. The sedimentation coefficient distribution is converted to a molecular weight distribution via a power law relation using an established procedure known as the Extended Fujita approach. We establish and apply the power law relation and Extended Fujita method for the first time to a series of native and processed oat beta-glucans. The application of this approach to beta-glucans from other sources is considered.

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