What are microbial extracellular polysaccharides (EPS)? What is their functional significance in the cell?
please help me..thanks for those who answered..please inicate your sources..and your names for authentication, : )thanks!!
- 1 decade agoFavorite Answer
Well this is not my field of interest, but here are several things I know about it:
EPS- polysaccharides produced by microbial cell which accumulate on the surface of the cell.
Many bacterial species produce EPS. Lactococcus lactis is well studied example of EPS producer.
Their significance for cell is still not clear, but they play role in defense against bacteriophage infection, and also help cell to maintain H2O.
EPS are also involved in virulence of some pathogenic species like Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Check, Griffith's experiments with S. pneumoniae strains infecting mouse. This experiment actually led to discovery of bacterial transformation.
But important for you is:
In this experiment, Streptococci producing polysaccharide envelope were virulent, because EPS prevented them form being destroyed by immunity system.
Production of EPS by milk fermentation bacteria, as L. lactis is desired, because it improves texture of smilk products, like cheese..Source(s): molecular biology student
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