Kraig Biocraft Laboratories, Inc. announced that researchers, working pursuant to Kraig's collaborative research program, utilizing customized spider silk genetic engineering sequences, succeeded in creating a new type of recombinant spider silk, which the Company is designating as "Big Red."The "Big Red" silk is currently being spun within the laboratory by transgenicly modified silkworms.
'Big Red' is a composite fiber," said Company CEO, Kim Thompson. "This new type of fiber was designed to be a combination of spider silk proteins, silkworm silk proteins and protein from an unrelated species. From a genetic perspective, what significantly differentiates this material from our Monster Silk is the unique spider silk genetic sequence that we used, which we designed to increase strength to weight ratios. Another important difference is the incorporation of a unique protein, which gives the new fiber its designation as 'red.'
"The design for 'Big Red' derived from what we learned about the mechanical characteristics of recombinant spider silk fibers from our work with Monster Silk," continued Thompson. "Specifically, the new fiber was designed to place more emphasis on tensile strength and slightly less emphasis on elongation. We anticipate that 'Big Red' will be a powerful arrow in our quiver as we move to commercialize Monster Silk and the Company is hopeful that this new material will follow it in the commercialization pipeline. In my view, the creation of Big Red demonstrates the power of our technology to continue to develop new and exciting materials."The "Big Red" name comes in part from the fact that the fibers have a slight red cast. Under UV light, the new fibers actually glow bright red.
Thompson further stated, "The successful creation of these new materials once again validates our scientific models. Based upon the observed levels of color expression and the nature of the spider silk genetic configurations used in its creation, the hope is that it will find its own significant niche in the technical textiles marketplace. Preparation for mechanical testing of the new fiber is currently taking place."