Polysaccharides are long-chain polymeric carbohydrates composed of various monosaccharide units with the general molecular formula Cx(H2O)y . Natural Monosaccharides are Glucose, Fructose, Sucrose, etc. Natural Polysaccharides have multiple uses in living beings. Cellulose and Chitins are Polysaccharides that work as structural units of body cells of various living organisms. Glycogen and Starch are energy storages Polysaccharides. Apart from these general functions, Natural Polysaccharides have many uses like Nutraceuticals, Biomedical research, and medical therapeutics like wound healing, drug delivery, tissue engineering & Immunity boosting. We will discuss a few of them.
Currently, Heparin is commercially done for SARS-Cov2 mitigation treatment which is GAG Based polysaccharide, Glycosaminoglycan, and Fucoidan derivative. It is useful in removing clots formed during Covid Infection
There are more polysaccharides under development. Following are Polysaccharides from Marine species like Brown seaweeds, Red Seaweeds & Green Seaweeds:
1. Fucoidans (L-Fucose type) extracted from Saccharina Japonica
Fucoidan is used in atherosclerosis therapy. It drastically reduces Triglycerides, Total Cholesterol & Low-Density Lipoprotein. Fucoidan also exhibits anti-diabetic property and acts as an anti-coagulant.
2. Laminarin sulphate, from Laminarin (D-Glucopyranose)
Most of these polysaccharides are used as their sulphated derivatives. Like Fucoidan, It has lipid-controlling properties. It has good free radical scavenging ability and helps in increasing Gut-bacteria
For years Alginate has been used as a thickening agent, gelating agent, and colloidal stabilizer in the food and beverage industry. It is obtained from Algae & Bacteria but commercially we get it from Sea-weeds. Alginate fibers can reduce LDL & HDL Cholesterol levels. The sulfated form has anti-coagulant activity. Low molecular-weight polyguluronate sulfate (LPGS) from alginate has anti-inflammatory action reducing Granuloma. It also has Gut-probiotic & anti-oxidant activity.
4. Ulvan B
Ulvan is a sulfated heteropolysaccharide that is composed of disaccharide units of D-glucuronic acid or L-iduronic acid attached through a sulfated 1,4 L-rhamnose. It is obtained from Green Marine Algae. Like others, It reduces Triglycerides, Cholesterols & Total Lipid levels by 30% to 70%. Sulfated and other chemically modified derivatives of Ulvan have high anti-Oxidant activities.
It is a sulfated Polysaccharide extracted from Atlantic Ocean Red Seaweed. It was used as a Cough remedy in Ireland since 400AD. There are 4-5 varieties of Carrageenan based on the Sulfate position. Many of them are used as gel-forming agents and Thickeners in the Food Industry. It has shown remarkable activity in lowering Lipid levels, Phospholipid, and Cholesterol levels. It shows different activity than other seaweed polysaccharides in inflammation. It is a pro-inflammatory agent.
In addition, we are working on plant based brand new Polysaccharide with High potency. It helps in improving the immune system and the body resistance against infections. It shows activity to increase CD4+ T cells which are main part of human immune system.
We have seen many Polysaccharides as their sulphated derivatives. We have developed technology to make most modern sulphating agent SO3:DMF Complex Which is difficult to manufacture. DMF is used regularly as solvent in Pharma manufacturing and hence it is safer & better than Pyridine:SO3 complex.