German companies BRAIN Biotech and AMSilk have collaborated to optimize the specific properties of structural proteins for various high-performance-oriented fields of application in the textile sector.

BRAIN Biotech develops and manufactures bio-based solutions and products for the apparel industry. Its partner in this collaboration, AMSilk, is an industrial supplier of innovative biomaterials in the textile, medical and consumer goods industries.

AMSilk produces biotechnological materials based on renewable carbon structural proteins that are fully recyclable, 100% biodegradable, and contain no microplastics. Due to their exceptional mechanical as well as biochemical properties, these biomaterials are extremely versatile for use in a wide variety of applications. These include the apparel, medical and automotive industries, among others.

Andreas Schmideder, head of business opportunities and development at BRAIN Biotech, said: “AMSilk’s bio-fabricated fibres have immense potential, as the underlying structural proteins can be modified at the molecular level. This makes it possible to tailor products to meet specific market requirements.”

Alexander Pelzer, head of research and development at BRAIN Biotech’s Zwingenberg site, emphasised that, “In this collaboration, our protein engineering experts are once again demonstrating their capabilities in protein development, especially in particularly challenging tasks that require novel approaches.

“Our protein optimization technologies, based on rational sequence- and structure-driven design, have already proven themselves in many optimization processes. Our enzyme technology unit will further develop these structural proteins. This will be in close collaboration with AMSilk to achieve the desired properties for higher-performance fibres.”

Last year, AMSilk revealed plans to scale its production of bio-based silk materials by several thousand tonnes a year, including expansion of its production network outside of Europe.