Recent advances in production of recombinant spider silk proteins
Spider silk has been drawing much attention as a great biomaterial having many applications in biotechnology and biomedicine owing to its several desired material characteristics such as outstanding strength, toughness, and elasticity as well as biodegradability and biocompatibility. With various applications foreseeable in industry, there has been much effort to produce recombinant spider silk protein in large amounts. However, owing to the difficulties in its production using spiders, alternative host systems and engineering methods have been investigated to develop suitable production systems that can efficiently produce spider silk protein. Here, we review recent advances in production of spider silk proteins in various heterologous host systems with focus given on the development of metabolic and cellular engineering strategies.
Graphical abstractFigure optionsDownload full-size imageDownload high-quality image (93 K)Download as PowerPoint slideHighlights► Spider silk a biopolymer of great strength, toughness, and elasticity as well as biodegradability and biocompatibility. ► Various host systems ranging from bacteria to animal systems have been employed for the production of recombinant spider silk proteins. ► Ultra-high molecular weight spider silk protein showing Kevlar strength could be produced in E. coli by systems metabolic engineering. ► Transgenic silkworms producing recombinant or chimera spider silk have great potential for actual production in large scale.
Journal: Current Opinion in Biotechnology - Volume 23, Issue 6, December 2012, Pages 957–964