By using the X-ray-diffraction results reported previously for sodium heparan sulphate, a twofold helical conformation with an axially projected disaccharide repeat (h) equal to 0.93 nm has been examined in detail. On the basis of a repeating sequence of 1,4-alpha-D-glucosamine and 1,4-beta-D-glucuronic acid, trial and stereochemically feasible molecular models were computer-generated. An optimum twofold helical conformation is proposed, incorporating stabilizing intra-chain hydrogen bonds across both glycosidic linkages.

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