The Selective Extraction of Glucuronoarabinoxylans from Sorghum Endosperm Cell Walls using Barium and Potassium Hydroxide Solutions
Various populations of hemicellulosic material were solubilised from water-unextractable cell wall material (WUS) of sorghum (Sorghum vulgarecv. Fara Fara) by sequential extractions with alkali. Saturated Ba(OH)2-solutions, followed by distilled water, 1mKOH, 4mKOH and 4mKOH containing 4% (w/v) H3BO3 were used to extract primarily glucuronoarabinoxylans (GAX) from sorghum WUS. Cellulose remained in the residue. In total over 90% of all GAX originally present in the WUS were recovered, particularly in the saturated Ba(OH)2, 1mKOH and 4mKOH extracts. Saturated Ba(OH)2 was found to be the most selective of the extractants tested for GAX. (1→3), (1→4)-Î²-d-glucans were found predominantly in the fraction obtained by washing with water after the extraction with saturated Ba(OH)2. All extracted arabinoxylans were highly substituted (arabinose/xylose>1) and contained, besidesl-arabinose andd-xylose, the acidic sugarsd-glucuronic, 4-O-methyl-d-glucuronic andd-galacturonic acid. The average molecular weight ranged from 210 000–1 300 000, which corresponds with DPs ofc. 1500 to 9300. The selectivity of the extractant was apparently enhanced by the presence of a bivalent cation.