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Issue 1, 2010
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Hyperbranched 5,6-glucan as reducing sugar ball

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The ring-opening polymerization of 5,6-anhydro-1,2-O-isopropylidene-α-D-glucofuranose (1) as a latent cyclic AB2-type monomer was carried out using potassium tert-butoxide (t-BuOK) or boron trifluoride diethyletherate (BF3·OEt2) as an initiator in order to synthesize a novel hyperbranched glycopolymer. The anionic and cationic polymerizations proceeded via the proton-transfer reaction mechanism to produce the hyperbranched poly(5,6-anhydro-1,2-O-isopropylidene-α-D-glucofuranose) (2). In particular, the cationic polymerization with the slow-monomer-addition strategy is a facile method leading to the hyperbranched glycopolymers with high molecular weights and highly branched structures. The weight-average molecular weight (Mw,SEC-MALLS) values of 2 measured by multi-angle laser light scattering (MALLS) varied in the range from 7400 to 122 400, which were significantly higher than the weight-average molecular weight (Mw,SEC) values determined by size exclusion chromatography (SEC). The intrinsic viscosities ([η]) of these polymers were very low in the range of 3.3–4.6 mL g−1 and the Mark–Houwink–Sakurada exponents, α, were calculated to be 0.08–0.27. These results of the MALLS, SEC, and viscosity measurements suggested that these polymers exist in a compact spherical conformation in solution because of their highly branched structure. The synthesis of the hyperbranched 5,6-glucan (3) by hydrolysis of polymer 2 was also demonstrated. Polymer 3 is a novel water-soluble hyperbranched glycopolymer arranged with numerous reducing D-glucose units on the peripheries of the polymer, and has a higher reducing ability than D-glucose because of the glyco-cluster effect or the multivalent effect of the reducing D-glucose units. Therefore, polymer 3 should be called a “reducing sugar ball”.

Graphical abstract: Hyperbranched 5,6-glucan as reducing sugar ball

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Publication details

The article was received on 23 Aug 2009, accepted on 02 Nov 2009 and first published on 21 Dec 2009

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/B9PY00223E
Citation: Polym. Chem., 2010,1, 82-92
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    Hyperbranched 5,6-glucan as reducing sugar ball

    M. Tamaki, T. Taguchi, S. Nakabayashi, K. Mori, Y. Kitajyo, R. Sakai, T. Kakuchi and T. Satoh, Polym. Chem., 2010, 1, 82
    DOI: 10.1039/B9PY00223E

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