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Composition and hierarchical organisation of a spider silk.

Sponner A, Vater W, Monajembashi S, Unger E, Grosse F, Weisshart K - PLoS ONE (2007)

Bottom Line: Here we link morphological defined structural elements in dragline silk of Nephila clavipes to their biochemical composition and physicochemical properties.Five layers of different make-ups could be distinguished.Of these only the two core layers contained the known silk proteins, but all can vitally contribute to the mechanical performance or properties of the silk fibre.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Albeit silks are fairly well understood on a molecular level, their hierarchical organisation and the full complexity of constituents in the spun fibre remain poorly defined. Here we link morphological defined structural elements in dragline silk of Nephila clavipes to their biochemical composition and physicochemical properties. Five layers of different make-ups could be distinguished. Of these only the two core layers contained the known silk proteins, but all can vitally contribute to the mechanical performance or properties of the silk fibre. Understanding the composite nature of silk and its supra-molecular organisation will open avenues in the production of high performance fibres based on artificially spun silk material.

Show MeSH
Protein composition of silk layers.Filter strips obtained by western blotting and loaded with material extracted from the indicated fibre layers were stained with Ponceau S (Pon) or reacted with Concavalin A (ConA), pre-immune serum (PIS), S1Rx, S2Rx and S-pbs. The running position of a 200 kDa marker is indicated by the lines.
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pone-0000998-g003: Protein composition of silk layers.Filter strips obtained by western blotting and loaded with material extracted from the indicated fibre layers were stained with Ponceau S (Pon) or reacted with Concavalin A (ConA), pre-immune serum (PIS), S1Rx, S2Rx and S-pbs. The running position of a 200 kDa marker is indicated by the lines.

Mentions: A lipid character of the outermost layer was indicated by the weak staining of silk with the lipophilic dye oil red (Figure 2A). This staining was lost by ether extraction coincident with a loss in the layer (Figure 1C). The material did not show any prominent protein bands in western blots nor was the material reactive to Concavalin A or any of our employed silk specific sera, which included reactivity against the repetitive parts of MaSp1 (S1Rx) and MaSp 2 (S2Rx) and native silk (S-pbs) [26] (Figure 3). The layer therefore is likely to consist of previously described lipids [27] and we refer to it as the lipid coat.


Composition and hierarchical organisation of a spider silk.

Sponner A, Vater W, Monajembashi S, Unger E, Grosse F, Weisshart K - PLoS ONE (2007)

Protein composition of silk layers.Filter strips obtained by western blotting and loaded with material extracted from the indicated fibre layers were stained with Ponceau S (Pon) or reacted with Concavalin A (ConA), pre-immune serum (PIS), S1Rx, S2Rx and S-pbs. The running position of a 200 kDa marker is indicated by the lines.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC1994588&req=5

pone-0000998-g003: Protein composition of silk layers.Filter strips obtained by western blotting and loaded with material extracted from the indicated fibre layers were stained with Ponceau S (Pon) or reacted with Concavalin A (ConA), pre-immune serum (PIS), S1Rx, S2Rx and S-pbs. The running position of a 200 kDa marker is indicated by the lines.
Mentions: A lipid character of the outermost layer was indicated by the weak staining of silk with the lipophilic dye oil red (Figure 2A). This staining was lost by ether extraction coincident with a loss in the layer (Figure 1C). The material did not show any prominent protein bands in western blots nor was the material reactive to Concavalin A or any of our employed silk specific sera, which included reactivity against the repetitive parts of MaSp1 (S1Rx) and MaSp 2 (S2Rx) and native silk (S-pbs) [26] (Figure 3). The layer therefore is likely to consist of previously described lipids [27] and we refer to it as the lipid coat.

Bottom Line: Here we link morphological defined structural elements in dragline silk of Nephila clavipes to their biochemical composition and physicochemical properties.Five layers of different make-ups could be distinguished.Of these only the two core layers contained the known silk proteins, but all can vitally contribute to the mechanical performance or properties of the silk fibre.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Albeit silks are fairly well understood on a molecular level, their hierarchical organisation and the full complexity of constituents in the spun fibre remain poorly defined. Here we link morphological defined structural elements in dragline silk of Nephila clavipes to their biochemical composition and physicochemical properties. Five layers of different make-ups could be distinguished. Of these only the two core layers contained the known silk proteins, but all can vitally contribute to the mechanical performance or properties of the silk fibre. Understanding the composite nature of silk and its supra-molecular organisation will open avenues in the production of high performance fibres based on artificially spun silk material.

Show MeSH