Size, structure and scaling relationships in glycogen from various sources investigated with asymmetrical flow field-flow fractionation and (1)H NMR.

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In this paper we investigate the size, structure and scaling relationships in glycogen isolated from five different animal sources. For this purpose a versatile fractionation technique, asymmetrical flow field-flow fractionation (AsFlFFF), coupled to multi-angle light scattering, is utilized. For determination of the average degree of branching (1)H NMR is utilized. The results give a detailed insight into the physico-chemical properties of glycogen over the whole size distribution. The results show that glycogen is a hyper branched macromolecule with wide size distributions, and in some samples two major populations are clearly observed which most likely correspond to β- and α-particles of glycogen. The results also illustrates that glycogen is a polysaccharide showing rather diverse conformational properties, over the size distribution, depending on its origin and the extraction procedure. The ratio between root-mean-square radius and hydrodynamic radius varies depending of both sample origin the molar mass of the macromolecules, reflecting differences in conformation and scaling within the size distribution. Thus, a priori assumptions regarding the r(rms)/r(h) are difficult to make and r(rms)/r(h) based on average properties give an incomplete description of the properties. Furthermore, the results display the strength of the apparent density (as obtained from AsFlFFF-MALS-RI) as a characterization parameter for scaling in disperse macromolecules.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cardiac and Cardiovascular Systems
  • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology and Diabetes


  • Field-flow fractionation, Conformation, Glycogen
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-465
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Macromolecules
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Publication categoryResearch