Artificial egg stalks made of a recombinantly produced lacewing silk protein

Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2012 Jun 25;51(26):6521-4. doi: 10.1002/anie.201200591. Epub 2012 May 16.

Abstract

Rigid threads: Lacewings protect their eggs from predators by laying them on small stalks (see picture). The stalks have good mechanical properties and, unlike most other silks, a cross β structure. An artificial egg stalk was produced using a designed recombinant variant of a sequenced lacewing egg stalk protein, and it attained 90 % of the tensile strength of a natural egg stalk.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Insect Proteins / chemistry
  • Insect Proteins / genetics
  • Insect Proteins / metabolism*
  • Insect Proteins / ultrastructure
  • Insecta / chemistry
  • Insecta / genetics
  • Insecta / metabolism*
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Recombinant Proteins / chemistry
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism
  • Recombinant Proteins / ultrastructure
  • Silk / chemistry
  • Silk / genetics
  • Silk / metabolism*
  • Silk / ultrastructure
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared
  • Tensile Strength

Substances

  • Insect Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Silk