The effect of molar mass and, in the case of dextran, of the degree of branching on the thermal degradation kinetics of dextran
and pullulan was studied in the presence and absence of oxygen. Although the initial mass loss of the dextran samples occurred
at higher temperatures than that of the pullulan samples, the overall thermal degradation activation energies were lower for
dextran than for pullulan. In the case of dextran the thermal stability was found to decrease with molar mass and degree of
branching. The molar mass of pullulan, in the range of 104 to 105 g/mol, appeared to have no significant influence on the thermal characteristics of the samples.