Jump to main content
Jump to site search
Access to RSC content Close the message box

Continue to access RSC content when you are not at your institution. Follow our step-by-step guide.


Issue 4, 2015
Previous Article Next Article

Rheology of reconstituted silk fibroin protein gels: the epitome of extreme mechanics

Author affiliations

Abstract

In nature, silk fibroin proteins assemble into hierarchical structures with dramatic mechanical properties. With the hope of creating new classes of on demand silk-based biomaterials, Bombyx mori silk is reconstituted back into stable aqueous solutions that can be reassembled into functionalized materials; one strategy for reassembly is electrogelation. Electrogels (e-gels) are particularly versatile and can be produced using electrolysis with small DC electric fields. We characterize the linear and nonlinear rheological behavior of e-gels to provide fundamental insights into these distinct protein-based materials. We observe that e-gels form robust biopolymer networks that exhibit distinctive strain hardening and are recoverable from strains as large as γ = 27, i.e. 2700%. We propose a simple microscopic model that is consistent with local restructuring of single proteins within the e-gel network.

Graphical abstract: Rheology of reconstituted silk fibroin protein gels: the epitome of extreme mechanics

Back to tab navigation

Article information


Submitted
16 Sep 2014
Accepted
01 Dec 2014
First published
01 Dec 2014

Soft Matter, 2015,11, 756-761
Article type
Paper

Rheology of reconstituted silk fibroin protein gels: the epitome of extreme mechanics

A. P. Tabatabai, D. L. Kaplan and D. L. Blair, Soft Matter, 2015, 11, 756
DOI: 10.1039/C4SM02079K

Social activity

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements