Inducible Fibril Formation of Silk-Elastin Diblocks.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Silk-elastin block copolymers have such physical and biological properties that make them attractive biomaterials for applications ranging from tissue regeneration to drug delivery. Silk-elastin block copolymers that only assemble into fibrils at high concentrations can be used for a template-induced fibril assembly. This can be achieved by additionally including template-binding blocks that promote high local concentrations of polymers on the template, leading to a template-induced fibril assembly. We hypothesize that template-inducible silk-fibril formation, and hence high critical concentrations for fibril formation, requires careful tuning of the block lengths, to be close to a critical set of block lengths that separates fibril forming from nonfibril forming polymer architectures. Therefore, we explore herein the impact of tuning block lengths for silk-elastin diblock polypeptides on fibril formation. For silk-elastin diblocks ES m -SQ n , in which the elastin pentamer repeat is ES = GSGVP and the crystallizable silk octamer repeat is SQ = GAGAGAGQ, we find that no fibril formation occurs for n = 6 but that the n = 10 and 14 diblocks do show concentration-dependent fibril formation. For n = 14 diblocks, no effect is observed of the length m (with m = 40, 60, 80) of the amorphous block on the lengths of the fibrils. In contrast, for the n = 10 diblocks that are closest to the critical boundary for fibril formation, we find that long amorphous blocks (m = 80) oppose the growth of fibrils at low concentrations, making them suitable for engineering template-inducible fibril formation.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Willems, L; Roberts, S; Weitzhandler, I; Chilkoti, A; Mastrobattista, E; van der Oost, J; de Vries, R

Published Date

  • May 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 4 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 9135 - 9143

PubMed ID

  • 31172045

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC6545545

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2470-1343

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2470-1343

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1021/acsomega.9b01025


  • eng