Understaning Spider Silk Synthesis
Spider silk is well known as one of nature’s strongest protein fibers. It is as tough as synthetic rubbers and stronger per weight than steel. Much of this strength is attributed to β-sheet poly-alanine crystals aligned with the fiber axis. By investigating the finely tuned biological processing of proteins during fiber formation, we can understand the controlled assembly of these domains that regulate strength and toughness in these incredible constructs and translate this to biomimetic routes of multifunctional fiber production.