An acidic polysaccharide, named saposhnikovan C, was isolated from the roots and rhizomes of Saposhnikovia divaricata schischk. It was homogeneous as judged by electrophoresis and gel chromatography, and showed remarkable reticuloendothelial system-potentiating activity in a carbon clearance test. It is composed of D-galacturonic acid: L-rhamnose: L-arabinose: D-galactose in a molar ratio of 27:7:8:8, and its molecular mass was estimated to be 132000. About 30 % of the D-galacturonic acid residues exist as the methyl esters. O-Acetyl groups were identified, and the content amounted to 3.3%. Methylation analysis, carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance, and controlled Smith degradation studies indicated the structural features. It has a pectin-like rhamnogalacturonan backbone with branched arabinan and galactan side chains.
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