Secrets of "Spider Silk" Strength Revealed ―Expectations in the Development of New Materials through the Discovery of New Genes―
July 3, 2019
Institute for Advanced Biosciences, Keio University
Project Assistant Professor Nobuaki Kono and Associate Professor Kazuharu Arakawa’s group at the Institute for Advanced Biosciences, Keio University (Tsuruoka City, Yamagata Prefecture; Director of the Institute: Masaru Tomita) collaborated with a team from Spiber Inc. (Tsuruoka City, Yamagata Prefecture), including Hiroyuki Nakamura, and determined the genome of the orb-weaving spider Araneus ventricosus, shed light on the full picture of the various spider silk proteins and their related genes for the first time in the world, and succeeded in the phylogenetic analysis of silk genes. In this research, new spider silk genes and the existence of low molecular proteins that influence silk strength were also discovered, and it is thought that these findings will significantly contribute to the development of artificial spider silk in the future. The outcomes of this research were published in the international scientific journal "Scientific Reports" on June 10, 2019.
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