Myng - thank you, thank you, thank you!
Yes, going from PDF to MOBI preserves the unicode characters!
I used Calibre for PDF-to-MODI conversion, and it inserts random paragraph breaks in the resulting MOBI (seemingly where the lines wrap in the original PDF). I will try Mobipocket Creator, as you suggest - perhaps it will solve this minor glitch.
Thank you again for the great suggestion!