Polysaccharides (Jan 2022)

Polysaccharide Stalks in <i>Didymosphenia geminata</i> Diatom: Real World Applications and Strategies to Combat Its Spread

  • Esther Somanader,
  • Roshini Sreenivas,
  • Golnoosh Siavash,
  • Nicole Rodriguez,
  • Tingxiao Gao,
  • Hermann Ehrlich,
  • M. Azizur Rahman

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 3, no. 1
pp. 83 – 94


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Didymosphenia geminata is a species of freshwater diatom that is known as invasive and is propagating quickly around the world. While invasive species are generally considered a nuisance, this paper attempts to find useful applications for D. geminata in the biomedical field and wastewater remediation. Here, we highlight the polysaccharide-based stalks of D. geminata that enable versatile potential applications and uses as a biopolymer, in drug delivery and wound healing, and as biocompatible scaffolding in cell adhesion and proliferation. Furthermore, this review focuses on how the polysaccharide nature of stalks and their metal-adsorption capacity allows them to have excellent wastewater remediation potential. This work also aims to assess the economic impact of D. geminata, as an invasive species, on its immediate environment. Potential government measures and legislation are recommended to prevent the spread of D. geminata, emphasizing the importance of education and collaboration between stakeholders.