A detailed appreciation of the biological function of a molecule requires that its conformation be understood. Therefore, in recent years a great deal of effort has been directed toward elucidating the solution conformation of oligosaccharides . The work, however, has been heavily focused on oligopyranosides. At the same time, a wealth of information detailing the conformation of furanose rings in nucleotides and nucleic acids has accumulated . However, except for sucrose [94,95], only recently have conformational investigations of oligosaccharides containing furanose residues been reported [96,97]. Outlined in this section are some recent investigations that have explored the solution conformation of methyl a-d-arabinofuranoside and oligosaccharides containing a-d-arabinofuranosyl residues.
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