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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2015 Nov;99(22):9361-80. doi: 10.1007/s00253-015-6948-8. Epub 2015 Sep 11.

To spin or not to spin: spider silk fibers and more.

Author information

1
Lehrstuhl Biomaterialien, Fakultät für Ingenieurswissenschaften, Universität Bayreuth, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany.
2
Lehrstuhl Biomaterialien, Fakultät für Ingenieurswissenschaften, Universität Bayreuth, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany. thomas.scheibel@bm.uni-bayreuth.de.
3
Institut für Bio-Makromoleküle (bio-mac), Universität Bayreuth, Universitätsstraße 30, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany. thomas.scheibel@bm.uni-bayreuth.de.
4
Bayreuther Zentrum für Kolloide und Grenzflächen (BZKG), Universität Bayreuth, Universitätsstraße 30, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany. thomas.scheibel@bm.uni-bayreuth.de.
5
Bayreuther Zentrum für Molekulare Biowissenschaften (BZMB), Universität Bayreuth, Universitätsstraße 30, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany. thomas.scheibel@bm.uni-bayreuth.de.
6
Bayreuther Materialzentrum (BayMAT), Universität Bayreuth, Universitätsstraße 30, 95440, Bayreuth, Germany. thomas.scheibel@bm.uni-bayreuth.de.

Abstract

Spider silk fibers have a sophisticated hierarchical structure composed of proteins with highly repetitive sequences. Their extraordinary mechanical properties, defined by a unique combination of strength and extensibility, are superior to most man-made fibers. Therefore, spider silk has fascinated mankind for thousands of years. However, due to their aggressive territorial behavior, farming of spiders is not feasible on a large scale. For this reason, biotechnological approaches were recently developed for the production of recombinant spider silk proteins. These recombinant proteins can be assembled into a variety of morphologies with a great range of properties for technical and medical applications. Here, the different approaches of biotechnological production and the advances in material processing toward various applications will be reviewed.

KEYWORDS:

Protein morphologies; Recombinant protein production; Spider silk

PMID:
26362683
DOI:
10.1007/s00253-015-6948-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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