A comparison of the reduction of alginic acid by different methods
Manning, James Harvey
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Several workers have reduced acidic polysaccharides for structural studies, for sorption studies, and for studies on chemical reactivity. All these investigators have used reduction procedures which have not been extensively studied and do not completely reduce the acidic groups. In addition, it is not known to what extent the other functional groups such as esters and hemiacetal are reduced. The goal of the present study is to obtain a further understanding of the reduction with both a Lewis acid, diborane, and a Lewis base, lithium borohydride, by comparison of the percent reduction of the functional groups on an acidic polysaccharide. Alginic acid from the stipes of the brown algae Laminaria hyperborea was selected as the acidic polysaccharide for study.