Kraig Biocraft Laboratories Inc., a biotechnology company, announced the successful creation of a new recombinant spider silk hybrid. This new two-strain hybrid is the result of the company’s program to produce larger and more robust production strains ahead of its spring production trials. The company’s technology uses scientifically enhanced silkworms to produce recombinant spider silk.
The silkworm hybrid, designated by Kraig Biocraft Laboratories as BAM 1, is the result of selective breeding to maximize both robustness and the ratio of usable silk per cocoon. Based upon its initial evaluation and a comparison of genetics, the company believes that this new two-strain hybrid is the most efficient spider silk production system produced to date. The finished cocoons were tested for cocoon size and silk yield.
The development of this new hybrid involved the careful selective breeding of the company’s Dragon SilkTM strain with numerous pure commercial production silkworm strains. Once the spider silk traits were bred and stabilized in the commercial strains, a series of cross-mattings were completed to test the results of various pairings.
This new hybrid produces more usable silk per cocoon than previous hybrid pairings and is expected to make the transition from development into operations in the first and second quarters of 2024.
“This new hybrid will play a key role in our production trials. Our team is currently scaling up production of the two parental lines used to create this hybrid. One of those parental lines is already homozygous for the spider silk gene. The next milestone, which we believe is imminent, will be to establish homozygosity with the second parental strain,” says Kim Thompson, Kraig Biocraft Laboratories founder and CEO. “The BAM 1 recombinant spider silk hybrid will be the central player in Kraig Labs’ spring production trials.”