Spider Silk Advancements

Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

USU Student Showcase

Publication Date


Faculty Mentor

Randy Lewis


Spider silk has many potential biomedical uses. Currently, synthetic spider silk is produced in goat milk via the pBC1 expression system. The extraction process associated with these proteins is long and difficult and the yields are not optimal. The focus of this project is to create goats that produce higher yields of easily-extractable spider silk in their milk. The main methods for creating these improved goats include the TALEN and CRISPR/Cas9 system as well as a modified version of the pBC1 expression system. All of these systems will be used to incorporate silk sequences into the goat genome as well as a poly-histidine tag to improve the purification of the silk proteins. These improvements will allow for increased silk production and more research involving spider silk applications.

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