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Molecules. 2019 Nov 2;24(21). pii: E3972. doi: 10.3390/molecules24213972.

A Report on Fungal (1→3)-α-d-glucans: Properties, Functions and Application.

Author information

1
Institute of Agrophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Doświadczalna 4, 20-290 Lublin, Poland. nowak.katarzyna11@gmail.com.
2
Department of Industrial and Environmental Microbiology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Akademicka 19, 20-033 Lublin, Poland. adrianw2@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl.
3
Department of Biotechnology, Human Nutrition and Food Commodity Science, University of Life Sciences in Lublin, Skromna 8, 20-704 Lublin, Poland. awasko1@tlen.pl.
4
Department of Industrial and Environmental Microbiology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Akademicka 19, 20-033 Lublin, Poland. m.pleszczynska@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl.
5
Department of Virology and Immunology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, ul. Akademicka 19, 20-033 Lublin, Poland. rpaduch@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl.
6
Department of General Ophthalmology, Medical University, Chmielna 1, 20-079 Lublin, Poland. rpaduch@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl.
7
Department of Industrial and Environmental Microbiology, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Akademicka 19, 20-033 Lublin, Poland. jolanta.jaroszuk-scisel@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl.
8
Institute of Agrophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Doświadczalna 4, 20-290 Lublin, Poland. a.bieganowski@ipan.lublin.pl.

Abstract

The cell walls of fungi are composed of glycoproteins, chitin, and α- and β-glucans. Although there are many reports on β-glucans, α-glucan polysaccharides are not yet fully understood. This review characterizes the physicochemical properties and functions of (1→3)-α-d-glucans. Particular attention has been paid to practical application and the effect of glucans in various respects, taking into account unfavourable effects and potential use. The role of α-glucans in plant infection has been proven, and collected facts have confirmed the characteristics of Aspergillus fumigatus infection associated with the presence of glucan in fungal cell wall. Like β-glucans, there are now evidence that α-glucans can also stimulate the immune system. Moreover, α-d-glucans have the ability to induce mutanases and can thus decompose plaque.

KEYWORDS:

(1→3)-α-d-glucans; cell walls; fungi; polysaccharides

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