Patent Pick: Spider Silk Slow Release

Patent Picks are chosen by the editors from publicly available sources. This invention describes spider silk polypeptide particles and their production, for applications such as the slow release of ingredients.

Spider silk-derived polypeptide particles and method for producing them
U.S. Patent Application 20150376247
Publication date: Dec. 31, 2015
Inventors: T. Osawa and K. Morita

The polypeptide particles of the present invention are derived from spider silk proteins and have an average particle size of 1,000 nm or less. A method for producing them is described, including: a) a solution production step in which the polypeptide is dissolved in DMSO, DMF and/or these with an inorganic salt; b) said solution is substituted with a water-soluble solvent to obtain an aqueous solution of the polypeptide; and c) the aqueous solution of the polypeptide is dried. These polypeptide particles are suitable for application to a living body.

According to the inventors, by using a specific solvent, substituting it to obtain an aqueous solution, and drying the aqueous solution, the polypeptide particles produced have sufficiently low remaining solvent. And since their average particle size is sufficiently small, more particles such as a medicament or perfume can adhere to a predetermined substrate, compared with particles having larger average particle sizes.

Further, when the particles are attached to the substrate surface, they can effectively delay an exposure of the substrate surface even if their individual decomposition rate and the desorption speed from the substrate surface are the same as those of particles having a larger average particle size.

Incidentally, those particles produced that are spherical in shape are used favorably in cosmetics, paints, etc. Additionally, the solvents used in the present technique have been used at low cost in the production of acrylic fibers and polyimid resin.

Patent application accessed on Jan. 4, 2016

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