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[″ + Sanskrit sarkara, sugar]
One of a group of carbohydrates that, upon hydrolysis, yield more than 20 monosaccharide molecules. They are complex carbohydrates of high molecular weight, usually insoluble in water, but when soluble, they form colloidal solutions. Their basic formula is (C6H12O6)n. They include two groups: starch, e.g., starch, inulin, glycogen, dextrin; and cellulose, e.g., cellulose and hemicelluloses. The hemicelluloses include the pentosans, e.g., gum arabic; hexosans, e.g., agar-agar; and hexopentosans, e.g., pectin.
SEE: carbohydrate; SEE: disaccharide; SEE: monosaccharide