Dextrans are the main exopolysaccharides produced by Leuconostoc species. Other dextran-producing lactic acid bacteria include Streptococci, Lactobacilli, and Weissella species. Commercial production and structural analysis has focused mainly on dextrans from Leuconostoc species, particularly on Leuconostoc mesenteroides strains. In this study, we used NMR spectroscopy techniques to analyze the structures of dextrans produced by Leuconostoc citreum E497 and Weissella confusa E392. The dextrans were compared to that of L. mesenteroides B512F produced under the same conditions. Generally, W. confusa E392 showed better growth and produced more EPS than did L. citreum E497 and L. mesenteroides B512F. Both L. citreum E497 and W. confusa E392 produced a class 1 dextran. Dextran from L. citreum E497 contained about 11% α-(1→2) and about 3.5% α-(1→3)-linked branches whereas dextran from W. confusa E392 was linear with only a few (2.7%) α-(1→3)-linked branches. Dextran from W. confusa E392 was found to be more linear than that of L. mesenteroides B512F, which, according to the present study, contained about 4.1% α-(1→3)-linked branches. Functionality, whether physiological or technological, depends on the structure of the polysaccharide. Dextran from L. citreum E497 may be useful as a source of prebiotic gluco-oligosaccharides with α-(1→2)-linked branches, whereas W. confusa E392 could be a suitable alternative to widely used L. mesenteroides B512F in the production of linear dextran.
- Leuconostoc citreum
- Leuconostoc mesenteroides
- Weissella confusa
Maina, N. H., Tenkanen, M., Maaheimo, H., Juvonen, R., & Virkki, L. (2008). NMR spectroscopic analysis of exopolysaccharides produced by Leuconostoc citreum and Weissella confusa. Carbohydrate Research, 343(9), 1446-1455. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carres.2008.04.012