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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1976 Dec 21;451(2):436-43.

Structure of chondroitin sulfates. Analyses of the products formed from chondroitin sulfates A and C by the action of the chondroitinases C and AC from Flavobacterium heparinum.


The structures of chondroitin sulfate A from whale cartilage and chondroitin sulfate C from shark cartilage have been examined with the aid of the chondroitinases AC and C from Flavobacterium heparinum. The analyses of the products formed from the chondroitin sulfates by the action of the chondroitinases have shown that three types of oligosaccharides compose the structure of chondroitin sulfate A, namely, a dodeca-, hexa- and a tetra-saccharide, containing five, two and one 4-sulfated disaccharides per 6-sulfated disaccharide residue, respectively. The polymer contains an average of 3 mol of each oligosaccharide per mol of chondroitin sulfate A. Each mol of chondroitin sulfate C contains an average of 5 mol of 4-sulfated disaccharide units. A tetra-saccharide containing one 4-sulfated disaccharide and one 6-sulfated disaccharide C indicating that the 4-sulfated disaccharides are not linked together in one specific region but spaced in the molecule.

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