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Title: Multi-scale thermal stability of a hard thermoplastic protein-based material
Authors: Latza, Victoria
Guerette, Paul Andre
Ding, Dawei
Amini, Shahrouz
Kumar, Akshita
Schmidt, Ingo
Keating, Steven
Oxman, Neri
Weaver, James C.
Fratzl, Peter
Miserez, Ali
Masic, Admir
Keywords: cephalopod
thermal alteration
Issue Date: 2015
Source: Latza, V., Guerette, P. A., Ding, D., Amini, S., Kumar, A., Schmidt, I., et al. (2015). Multi-scale thermal stability of a hard thermoplastic protein-based material. Nature Communications, 6, 8313-.
Series/Report no.: Nature Communications
Abstract: Although thermoplastic materials are mostly derived from petro-chemicals, it would be highly desirable, from a sustainability perspective, to produce them instead from renewable biopolymers. Unfortunately, biopolymers exhibiting thermoplastic behaviour and which preserve their mechanical properties post processing are essentially non-existent. The robust sucker ring teeth (SRT) from squid and cuttlefish are one notable exception of thermoplastic biopolymers. Here we describe thermoplastic processing of squid SRT via hot extrusion of fibres, demonstrating the potential suitability of these materials for large-scale thermal forming. Using high-resolution in situ X-ray diffraction and vibrational spectroscopy, we elucidate the molecular and nanoscale features responsible for this behaviour and show that SRT consist of semi-crystalline polymers, whereby heat-resistant, nanocrystalline b-sheets embedded within an amorphous matrix are organized into a hexagonally packed nanofibrillar lattice. This study provides key insights for the molecular design of biomimetic protein- and peptide-based thermoplastic structural biopolymers with potential biomedical and 3D printing applications.
DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9313
Schools: School of Materials Science & Engineering 
School of Biological Sciences 
Research Centres: Energy Research Institute @ NTU (ERI@N) 
Rights: © 2015 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:ERI@N Journal Articles
MSE Journal Articles
SBS Journal Articles

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