Super Color Silk Worms

Super Color Silk Worms


By feeding silkworms a mulberry mixture containing fluorescent dye, scientists are able to harvest brightly coloured silk.

The environmentalists like it cause it cuts back on the water use and harsh chemicals needed for the dyeing process. Scientists like it for the potential to create silk with antibacterial, anticoagulant and anti-inflammatory properties that could be used in wound dressing or even as biomedical frameworks for repairing damaged tissues. We like for both those reasons. Plus, we especially like it because of how colorful they are.

Here's some silkworm color love inspired by science and these 'intrinsically colored and luminescent silk worms'.

Silk_worm
silkworm silkworm

silkworm Silkworm

By feeding them mixtures containing dyes, researchers have helped silkworms spin fluorescent, coloured silk.

Silkworm_Glow Silkworms

silkworm Silkworm

silkworm Silkworm_Flower

Silkworm silkworm

By feeding silkworms a mulberry mixture containing fluorescent dye, Natalia's team was able to harvest brightly coloured silk that is structurally unaffected, but which also has luminescent, or glowing, properties. The dye molecules are ingrained within the silk filaments to create permanent colour.

silkworm silkworm

silkworms Silkworm

SILK_WORM! Corn_Silk_Worm

blue.wormblue.silk silk_worms_at_night

Image credits: Institute of Materials Research and Engineering

Sources: Australian GeographicIntrinsically Colored and Luminescent Silk [Via inhabitat]


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18 Comments
Showing 1 - 18 of 18 Comments

Faeleia

a lil disapppointed by this article. I thought there was going to be more info on this..I'll go read up from the sources
Team

mollybermea

Thanks for your feedback Faeleia. I think there could be a lot more to say as well.... REALLY interesting concept though...

Faeleia wrote:
a lil disapppointed by this article. I thought there was going to be more info on this..I'll go read up from the sources

metropolitan mouse

Oh, I had no idea this could even exist! That's what is called "smart fabric" I guess. That's fantastic.

Inspiration2

poor little ones! oh...

chasetheabyss

Animal activists will be really happy about this...
Nice colours by the way :)

splendidsplenda

chasetheabyss wrote:
Animal activists will be really happy about this...
Nice colours by the way :)
yes I agree!

greatzenaida

I have learned that this feelings is present in the small things and manifests itself in the most insignificant of our action ...

attlebridge

chasetheabyss wrote:
Animal activists will be really happy about this...
Nice colours by the way :)

Silkworms are killed when the silk is harvested anyway; boiled in water before the adult moth emerges from the cocoon.
While I don't think the lifespan of the worm is long enough to result in any health issues from the dye... I don't think animal activists are happy about silk farming in the first place. ;)

chasetheabyss

Yes I agree, in fact I was sarcastic ;)

huege

If I eat enough of that dye will I fluoresce?

splendidsplenda

huege wrote:
If I eat enough of that dye will I fluoresce?
maybe you will!

ElenaGilbert

huege wrote:
If I eat enough of that dye will I fluoresce?


ahahaha! :D

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