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Chemical description

Dextran, a microbial fermentative hydrocolloid, is a linear polysaccharide made of many glucose molecules joined as chains of varying length. It was the first industrial polysaccharide produced by lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and is also one of the first water soluble gums known to man. Additionally, dextran is one of the first microbial polysaccharides to be commercialised and to be approved for use in food.

Dextran has applications in several fields. It is used especially in biochemistry as a support for filtration chromatography on a Sephadex type gel. Furthermore, dextran is applied in the food industry to increase the texture of food products such as yoghurts, cream desserts, milk-based drinks and salad dressings APPLICATIONS
Food industry

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Food industry

Dextran was initially studied in the 1950s as food ingredient, particularly as a thickener. The US Food and Drug Administration currently lists dextran as GRAS (Generally regarded as safe) as ingredient for food and feed applications. In 2001, the European Commission approved the use of dextran in baked goods, up to levels of 5%

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Nutraceutical industry

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Nutraceutical industry

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Cosmetic industry

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Cosmetic industry

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Waste water treatment

04

Waste water treatment

Dextran finds a wide range of application in waste water management. Many industries are searching for environmentally acceptable products for treating waste water effluent. Dextran offers many useful features like the stabilisation of alkali and acids at room temperature. It binds metal ions at an alkaline pH and is biodegradable and economical. It is used extensively in waste water treatment during the flocculation process.

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