Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Japanese team finds key component in spider silk
Japanese team finds key component in spider silk
03
Jun '18
Japanese team finds key component in spider silk
Scientists at Japan’s Riken Centre for Sustainable Resource Science have discovered a previously unidentified structural component key to the formation of spider silk and its extraordinary strength. Prized for its strength and flexibility, material scientists have long tried to produce synthetic analogs for spider silk. The results so far have been mixed.

Studies have shown the importance of beta sheets, or beta strands, the secondary structure in spider silk proteins, but scientists have struggled to understand how these strength-giving structures form. The transformation from soluble proteins to crystalised silk happens fast, making it difficult to study the proteins’ structures.

In order to gain new insights into the formation process, scientists genetically modified bacteria to produce the silk proteins of a golden orb-web spider. They used advanced imaging techniques to analyse the repeating pattern found within the soluble proteins. Their analysis showed the secondary structures feature a combination of random coils and a pattern called polyproline type II helix.

It turns out the helix pattern is essential to super strong silk. The polyproline type II helix lends structure to the soluble proteins and allows for the formation of beta sheets, which helps the proteins crystallise and quickly be woven into silk threads.

“We were fortunate to be able to use a combination of powerful methods, including solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, far-UV circular dichroism spectroscopy, and vibrational circular dichroism spectroscopy, to analyse the protein before it formed into the beta-sheets,” Riken researcher Nur Alia Oktaviani said. “It was very satisfying to discover this special conformation that leads to the formation of the beta-sheets.”

Researchers have detailed their breakthrough in the journal Nature Communications.

“Spider silk is a wonderful material, as it is extremely tough but does not contain harmful substances and is readily biodegradable, so it does not exert any harmful load on the environment,” said lead researcher Keiji Numata. “We hope that this discovery will help make it possible to create artificial silk that will prove useful for society.” (SV)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India


Must ReadView All

VF Corporation to split into two independent companies

Apparel/Garments | On 14th Aug 2018

VF Corporation to split into two independent companies

VF Corporation, a global leader in branded lifestyle apparel,...

Courtesy: Good On You

Apparel/Garments | On 14th Aug 2018

Good On You in Oz adds 500 European brands to rating app

Australia-based Good On You’s brand-rating app has recently added 500 ...

Courtesy: USDA/FAS

Textiles | On 14th Aug 2018

US cotton exports in 2017-18 highest in over a decade

Cotton exports from the US in 2017-18 reached their highest level...

Interviews View All

DK Sharma
Velocity Apparelz

We constantly communicate with employees at all levels

Sanjay Yagnik
Maa Tex Speciality

‘We suggest reducing dosage of sizing chemicals to reduce sludge...

Anavila Misra
Anavila Collection

Fashion shows are also encouraging and highlighting sustainable fashion

Deepprakash Agrawal

Radhey Weaves is a Surat-based manufacturer of brocade fabrics. MD...

Abhishek Dhanuka

Vyom International Pvt Ltd, established in 2002, is one of Surat's leading ...

Anupam Arya

<div>Jaipur-based Fabriclore Retailing Pvt. Ltd. is attempting to revive...

Johan Berlin
Investkonsult Sweden AB

Investkonsult Sweden AB are consultants in the nonwoven and absorbent...

Dr. Rene Wollert
Freudenberg Nonwovens

Dr. Rene Wollert discusses the current scenario of the global nonwovens...

Alfonso Marra
Klopman

It was in 1968 that Klopman introduced the concept of poly/cotton workwear ...

Chandani Sahi
By Chandani

By Chandani is a womenswear prêt couture brand with fusion silhouettes by...

Pranav Mishra
Huemn

Designers Pranav Mishra and Shyma Shetty’s Huemn is known for its...

Jay Ramrakhiani
Occasions Elegance Wear

It is believed that by early 19th century, Varanasi weavers had moved away ...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

Leave your Comments


August 2018

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category


Related Categories:

Advanced Search