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. 2003 Aug;110(2):75-90.
doi: 10.1385/abab:110:2:75.

1H-NMR Study of Na Alginates Extracted From Sargassum Spp. In Relation to Metal Biosorption


1H-NMR Study of Na Alginates Extracted From Sargassum Spp. In Relation to Metal Biosorption

Thomas A Davis et al. Appl Biochem Biotechnol. .


The use of a number of species of marine brown algae in the implementation of bioremediation strategies for toxic heavy metals is being considered and evaluated. The biosorption capacity of these algae for heavy metals resides mainly in a group of linear polysaccharides known as alginates that occur as a gel in the algal thallus. The potential for selective metal binding by the biomass of two species of Sargassum was evaluated by 1H-NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) following a high temperature, alkaline extraction and purification of their alginate polysaccharide. The alkaline extraction protocol applied to Sargassum fluitans and Sargassum siliquosum yielded alginate samples of low viscosity, suitable for direct acquisition of well-resolved spectra. Estimates of both the ratio of beta-D-mannopyranuronosyl (M) and alpha-L-gulopyranuronosyl (G) residues along the polymer chain and the frequencies of occurrence of diad uronic acid residue pairs were obtained. Guluronic acid (G) was the major component in all extracts and the GG diads accounted for more than 49% of the polymer diads. Whereas the performance of Sargassum spp. in the metal biosorption process is a function of both its alginate content and composition, the occurrence of "G-blocks" in both purified alginates and in the raw brown seaweed is critical because it results in a well-established selectivity for divalent ions, potentially increasing the commercial effectiveness of targeted biosorption as a means of remediation.

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