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Eur J Biochem. 1981 May 15;116(2):359-64.

The structure of the capsular polysaccharide (K5 antigen) of urinary-tract-infective Escherichia coli 010:K5:H4. A polymer similar to desulfo-heparin.


The capsular polysaccharide was isolated from Escherichia coli 010:K5:H4; it could not be obtained from a uncapsulated (K5-) mutant. It contains N-acetylglucosamine and glucuronic acid in a molar ratio of 1:1. Acid hydrolysis of the acidic polysaccharide as well as Smith degradation and degradation by deamination of the carboxyl-reduced polysaccharide suggested that the polysaccharide is composed of a disaccharide repeating unit. The data obtained by methylation analysis and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy indicated that the repeating sequence of the capsular polysaccharide is the 4-beta-glucuronyl-1,4-alpha-N-acetylglucosaminyl unit. This structure is similar to that of desulfo-heparin.

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