Massive production of fibroin nano-fibrous biomaterial by turbulent co-flow
|Author/s||Gañán-Calvo, Alfonso M.
Blanco Trejo, Sergio
Ruiz López, Miguel
Guinea, Gustavo V.
Modesto-López, Luis B.
|Department||Universidad de Sevilla. Departamento de Ingeniería Aeroespacial y Mecánica de Fluidos|
|Abstract||Among the different polymers (proteins, polysaccharides, etc.) that make up natural fibers, fibroin is a protein produced by silk spinning animals, which have developed an optimized system for the conversion of a highly ...
Among the different polymers (proteins, polysaccharides, etc.) that make up natural fibers, fibroin is a protein produced by silk spinning animals, which have developed an optimized system for the conversion of a highly concentrated solution of this protein into high-performance solid fibers. This protein undergoes a self-assembly process in the silk glands that result from chemical gradients and by the application of mechanical stresses during the last step of the process. In the quest for a process that could mimic natural spinning at massive scales, we have discovered that turbulence offers a novel and promising solution: a turbulent liquid jet can be formed by a chemically green and simple coagulating liquid (a diluted solution of acetic acid in etanol) co-flowing with a concentrated solution of fibroin in water by the use of a Flow Blurring nebulizer. In this system, (a) the co-flowing coagulant liquid extracts water from the original protein solution and, simultaneously, (b) the self-assembled proteins are subjected to mechanical actions, including splitting and stretching. Given the non-negligible produced content with the size and appearance of natural silk, the stochastic distribution of those effects in our process should contain the range of natural ones found in animals. The resulting easily functionalizable and tunable one-step material is 100% biocompatible, and our method a perfect candidate to large-scale, low-cost, green and sustainable processing of fibroin for fibres and textiles.
|Funding agencies||Agencia Estatal de Investigación. España
Junta de Andalucía
|Citation||Gañán-Calvo, A.M., Blanco Trejo, S., Ruiz López, M., Guinea, G.V., Modesto-López, L.B. y Pérez-Rigueiro, J. (2022). Massive production of fibroin nano-fibrous biomaterial by turbulent co-flow. Scientific Reports, 12, 21924. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-26137-7.|