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J Basic Microbiol. 2007 Apr;47(2):103-17.

Bacterial exopolysaccharides--a perception.

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Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute, Bhavnagar, Gujarat, India.


Microbial polysaccharides are multifunctional and can be divided into intracellular polysaccharides, structural polysaccharides and extracellular polysaccharides or exopolysaccharides (EPS). Extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), produced by both prokaryotes (eubacteria and archaebacteria) and eukaryotes (phytoplankton, fungi, and algae), have been of topical research interest. Newer approaches are carried out today to replace the traditionally used plant gums by their bacterial counterparts. The bacterial exopolysaccharides represent a wide range of chemical structures, but have not yet acquired appreciable significance. Chemically, EPS are rich in high molecular weight polysaccharides (10 to 30 kDa) and have heteropolymeric composition. They have new-fangled applications due to the unique properties they possess. Owing to this, exopolysaccharides have found multifarious applications in the food, pharmaceutical and other industries. Hence, the present article converges on bacterial exopolysaccharides.

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