The book presents a comprehensive, systematic and authoritative survey of information about a family of chemically related, but functionally diverse, naturally occurring polysaccharides--the (1-3)-glucans. International contributors describe the chemical and physicochemical properties of these glucans and their derivatives and the molecular biological and structural aspects of the enzymes involved in their formation and breakdown. A detailed analysis of their physiological roles in the various biological situations in which they are found will be provided. Additionally, evolutionary relationships among the family of these glucans will be described.
Topics of medical relevance include detailing the glucans' interactions with the immune system and research for cancer therapy applications
Web resource links allow scientists to explore additional beta glucan research
Separate indexes divided into Species and Subject for enhanced searchability
1. Introduction and historical background 2. CHEMISTRY AND PHYSICO-CHEMISTRY 2.1 Chemistry of ß-Glucans 2.2 Physico-Chemistry of (1,3)-ß-Glucans 3. BIOCHEMISTRY 3.1 Plant and Microbial Enzymes Involved in the Depolymerisation of (1,3)-ß-d-Glucans and Related Polysaccharides 3.2 Interactions between Proteins and (1,3)-ß-Glucans and Related Polysaccharides 3.3 BIOSYNTHETIC ENZYMES 3.3.1 Enzymology and Molecular Genetics of Biosynthetic Enzymes for (1,3)-ß-Glucans
Prokaryotes 3.3.2 Biosynthetic Enzymes for (1,3)-ß-Glucans and (1,3;1,6) -ß-Glucans in Protozoans and Chromistans: Biochemical Characterization and Molecular Biology 3.3.3 Biosynthetic Enzymes for (1,3)-ß-Glucans and (1,3;1,6) -ß-Glucans from Yeasts: Biochemical Properties and Molecular Biology 3.3.4 Biochemical and Molecular Properties of Biosynthetic Enzymes for (1,3)-ß-Glucans in Embryophytes, Chlorophytes and Rhodophytes 4. BIOLOGY 4.1 Functional Roles of (1,3)-ß-Glucans and Related Polysaccharides: Prokaryotes 4.2 Biology of (1,3)-ß-Glucans and Related Glucans in Protozoans and Chromistans 4.3 Organization of Fungal, Oomycete and Lichen (1,3)-ß-Glucans 4.4 RHODOPHYTES, CHLOROPHYTES AND EMBRYOPHYTES 4.4.1 Callose in Cell Division 4.4.2 Cytology of the (1-3)-ß-Glucan (Callose) in Plasmodesmata and Sieve Plate Pores 4.4.3 Callose and Its Role in Pollen and Embryo-Sac Development in Flowering Plants 4.4.4 Callose in Abiotic Stress 4.4.5 Callose in Biotic Stress (Pathogenesis) Biology, biochemistry and Molecular Biology of Callose in Plant Defence: Callose Deoposition and turnover in plant--Pathogen Interactions 4.5 (1->3)-ß-GLUCANS IN INNATE IMMUNITY 4.5.1 Biological and Immunological Aspects of Innate Defence Mechanisms Activated by (1,3)-ß-Glucans and Related Polysaccharides in Invertebrates
4.5.2 (1,3)-ß-Glucans in Innate Immunity: Mammalian Systems
4.6 Distrubution, Fine Structure and Function of (1->3;1->4)-ß-Glucans in the Grasses and Other Taxa 4.7 Evolutionary Aspects of (1,3)-ß-Glucans and Related Polysaccharides Bibliography Indexes Subject index Species index Web resources