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Characterization of an extracellular polysaccharide produced by a Saharan bacterium Paenibacillus tarimensis REG 0201M

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The purpose of this paper is to highlight the novel molecular characteristics and rheological properties of the polysaccharide produced by a bacterium isolated from extremophilic environment (Algerian Sahara). Phenotypic and molecular characteristics of the REG 0201M bacterial strain retained for this research were studied. Extracellular polysaccharide produced by REG 0201M was purified, characterized and its production was investigated. Analysis of 16S rDNA gene sequence showed that strain REG 0201M belonged to the species Paenibacillus tarimensis. In sucrose agar medium, 1.31 g dry weight of the polysaccharide per liter was produced. Evaluation of water absorption capacity showed that this polysaccharide was able to absorb 1000 times more water than its own weight. The average molecular weight determined by high-performance size exclusion chromatography multiangle laser light scattering was 1.718 × 106 g mol−1. Analysis of the monosaccharide composition by high-performance anion exchange chromatography showed the presence of fructose (77.67%) as the main neutral sugar, followed by galactose (20.37%), arabinose (1.79%), and rhamnose (0.16%). Its global charge determined by the Zeta potential measurement was about −35.27 ± 0.66 mV. The main functional groups were elucidated by Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectroscopy while the surface morphology was resolved by scanning electron microscopy analysis. Moreover, the rheological data revealed shear thinning properties with the same general behavior of the studied polysaccharide compared to xanthan. These results show the great potential of this polysaccharide, which could help to promote its use in various industries by replacing synthetic polymers.

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The authors are very grateful to Professor Sylvie Turgeon, Doctor Laurie-Eve Rioux and Diane Gagnon (Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Institute of Nutrition and Functional Food, Laval University, Quebec, Canada) for their valuable advice and technical assistance in Molecular weight determination and Rheological study of polysaccharides.

We would like to thank Claire Boisset (CNRS, CERMAV, Grenoble-France) for technical assistance in HPAEC-Dionex. We would like to thank Kamel Ait Messaoud and Okba Selama for providing language assistance.

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Correspondence to Yahia Kaci.

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Boukhelata, N., Taguett, F. & Kaci, Y. Characterization of an extracellular polysaccharide produced by a Saharan bacterium Paenibacillus tarimensis REG 0201M. Ann Microbiol 69, 93–106 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13213-018-1406-3

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  • Rhizosphere
  • Paenibacillus tarimensis
  • Exopolysaccharide
  • Characterization
  • Rheology