CELLULOSE: Cellulose is a polymer of glucose which has the molecular formula (C6H10O5)n with ‘n’ ranging from 500 to 5,000, depending on the source. β-glucose units are linked at C1-C4 in a linear chain. The beta-glycoside bonds allow the chains to stretch out, and the chains are stabilized by intramolecular hydrogen bonds.
Hemicellulose: Hemicellulose is a low molecular weight, branched, amorphous polymer. Hence, compared to cellulose, hemicellulose is structurally weak and is easily hydrolyzed by dilute acid or base and enzymes. Hemicelluloses contain many D-pentose sugars, with xylose being the major component. Mannose and mannuronic acid are also present, and similarly galactose and galacturonic acid.