The gelling of κ-carrageenan in light and heavy water

Carbohydr Res. 2010 Nov 2;345(16):2368-73. doi: 10.1016/j.carres.2010.08.015. Epub 2010 Aug 27.


Gels of κ-carrageenan were prepared in H₂O and D₂O. Rheological measurements revealed that in heavy water the elastic modulus is substantially higher. From the rheological view point, this result indicates the formation of a higher number of physical-crosslinking points in the structure of the gel. These crosslinking points are mainly associated with the aggregation of the double-helix of the κ-carrageenan, which is enhanced in D₂O. The thermal stability of the gels in both solvents (relative to the sol-gel transition) was also investigated by using polarimetric measurements (to measure the relative fraction of helix-coil) and micro-differential scanning calorimetry (micro-DSC). The results obtained using these techniques are very consistent and allow us to propose a model to explain the differences for the gels formed in light and heavy water based on the degree of double-helix aggregation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Carbohydrate Conformation
  • Carrageenan / chemistry*
  • Deuterium Oxide / chemistry*
  • Gels / chemistry
  • Rheology
  • Solvents
  • Temperature
  • Water / chemistry*


  • Gels
  • Solvents
  • Water
  • Carrageenan
  • Deuterium Oxide