# What is the mechanism of saccharification by H2SO4?

We have been estimating total carbohydrate by Umbreit method/ Anthrone method in college. The website I have been reading says that $\ce{H_2SO_4}$ and heat is used to treat a polysaccharide solution yield hexoses and pentoses which further undergo dehydration to form hydroxymethylfurfural and furfural respectively. These compounds when react with Anthrone form coloured compounds.

I have been wondering what the mechanism of hydrolysis of polysaccharide is?

• Hmm, you're asking about most boring of those reactions :( Also don't write that you found nothing, what's the point in that? – Mithoron Aug 11 '16 at 22:41
• chemistry.stackexchange.com/questions/49703/… the mechanism given in the question by OP is correct. Don't think this qn deserves a -1. Googling "polysaccharide hydrolysis mechanism" or "glycosidic bond hydrolysis mechanism" don't give many good results outside of papers which might not be accessible to OP. The best search term seems to be "sucrose hydrolysis mechanism" but you would have to know that the mechanism of hydrolysis of sucrose (a disaccharide) is the same as that of polysaccharides. – orthocresol Aug 11 '16 at 22:47