The purification of hyaluronic acid (HA) is relatively significant to use in biomedical applications. The structure of HA is formed by the repetitive units of glucuronic acid and N-acetyl glucosamine. In this study, glucuronic acid-imprinted microbeads have been supplied for the purification of HA from cell culture (Streptococcus equi). Histidine-functional monomer. methacryloylamidohistidine (MAH) was chosen as the metal-complexing monomer. The glucuronic acid-imprinted poly(ethyleneglycoldimethacrylate-MAH-Copper(II)) [p(EDMA-MAH-Cu2+)] microbeads have been synthesized by typical suspension polymerization procedure. The template glucuronic acid has been removed by employing 5 M methanolic KOH solution. p (EDMA-MAH-Cu2+) microbeads have been characterized by elemental analysis, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images and swelling studies. Moreover, HA adsorption experiments have been performed in a batch experimental set-up. Purification of HA from cell culture supernatant has been also investigated by determining the hyaluronidase activity using purified HA as substrate. The glucuronic acid imprinted p(EDMA-MAH-Cu2+) particles can be used many times with no significant loss in adsorption capacities. Also, the selectivity of prepared molecular imprinted polymers (MIP) has been examined. Results have showed that MIP particles are 19 times more selective for glucuronic acid than N-acetylglucose amine. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.