|Heparan Sulfate (HS), otherwise known as heparin sulfate or heparin monosulfate, is a straight chain polysaccharide with structural multiplicity and basically composed of two kinds of disaccharide units. Namely, one is N-acetylated (>4) a-D-Glc NAc-(1>4)-? – D-Glc A(1>) and the other is N-sulfated disaccharides (>4) a-D-Glc NS-(1>4) – ?-D-Glc A or a – L – Ido A(1>) that are arranged mainly in a segregated manner ( where Glc A is glucuronic acid, Ido A is iduronic acid, Glc N is glucosamine, S is sulfate and Ac is acetate). Approximately 25% of the total polymer is initially formed by alternating arrangements of the two disaccharide units, (>4)a – D – Glc Ns (1>4) UA(1>4) a – D-Glc NAc (1>4) UA (1>4) a – D- Glc A (1>). |
As particular characteristics of HS, the ratio of Glc NAc residues to Glc NS residues is approximately 3.0 or less, containing about 20% sulfate groups, and the content of D-Glc A residues is more than twice the content of L-Ido A residues?5?. O-sulfate groups are always found on proximity to N-sulfate groups, which enhances the clustering of the sulfate residues and heterogeneity in chemical composition and charge density of HS.
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