A two-step enzymatic fingerprinting method was introduced to analyze a highly methylesterified and acetylated sugar beet pectin having a degree of methylesterification (DM) of 62 and acetylation of 30. A cocktail of pectolytic enzymes, including endo-polygalacturonase II (endo-PGII) and pectin lyase (PL), was used for the first digestion. The endo-PGII and PL resistant pectin fragments were isolated and subjected to a second digestion using fungal pectin methylesterase and endo-PGII. After the two sequential digestions, 78% of the total GalA residues present in the parental pectin were recovered as mono- and oligomers, which were used to quantitatively describe the parental SBP. For this reason, the descriptive parameters degree of blockiness (DBabs), degree of hydrolysis by PG (DHPG) and degree of hydrolysis by PL (DHPL) were established for both digestions. The first digestion revealed the presence of short blocks of nonesterified GalA residues and blocks of partly methylesterified and acetylated GalA residues in the parental SBP, in addition to blocks of highly methylesterified and acetylated GalA residues. The second digestion revealed the presence of blocks of methylesterified, partly methylesterified and/or acetylated GalA residues in a sequence not to be degradable by neither endo-PGII nor by PL. The acetyl groups were present in an blockwise manner. Application of the method to two differently prepared DM 50 SBPs showed that the two pectins differ in the ratio of blocks of nonesterified and blocks of partly methylesterified and acetylated GalA residues.
- galacturonic acid distribution
- esterified oligogalacturonides