Physics, Chemistry and Materials Science at the Nanoscale
Cite as: Alain Dufresne. Bacterial cellulose, nano Online. (2016). DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/nano.0052.00004
Cite as: Alain Dufresne: Bacterial cellulose. In: Nanocellulose. De Gruyter (2012). 125–146. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110254600.125
Cellulose is the major component of plant biomass in which it plays a structural role. However, it is also found as microbial extracellular polymer. Bacterial or microbial cellulose belongs to specific products of primary metabolism and constitutes mainly a protective coating. It is an extracellular product of vinegar bacteria which was described by Pasteur as “a sort of moist skin, swollen, gelatinous and slippery …” (Ring, 1982). One of the most important features of bacterial cellulose is its chemical purity, which distinguishes this cellulose from that of plants, usually associated with hemicelluloses and lignin. The removal of the latter is inherently difficult. However, cellulose synthesized by bacteria showed identical molecular structure to that made by plants.