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Xanthan gum is a kind of macromolecular polysaccharide material, which is polymerized with 5 Molecular sugars as a unit. Each unit consists of two molecules of glucose, two molecules of mannose and one molecule of glucuronic acid. Its main chain is composed of two molecules of glucose linked by β - glucose through 1,4-glycoside bond. Its structure is the same as that of cellulose. There are two molecules of mannose and one molecule of glucuronic acid on C3 of glucose to form side chain. There are pyruvate and carboxylic acid side groups in the side chain. Because its side chain contains acid groups, it is polyanion in aqueous solution, forming the three-dimensional structure of xanthan gum: the side chain with anions winds the main chain to form a spiral structure, and the molecules form a double helix by hydrogen bond, while the double helix structure is a regular "super bonded ribbon spiral polymer" by weak non covalent bond dimension system. The unique properties of xanthan gum are related to the pyruvic acid contained in it. Usually, the content of pyruvic acid in xanthan gum can be used to measure its performance.
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