Dynamic Silk Coatings for Implantable Devices


Medical device coatings

Development Phase

Proof of concept demonstrations


Medical device coatings

Silks are fibrous proteins with remarkable mechanical properties produced in fiber form by silkworms and spiders. Regenerated silk solutions have been used to form a variety of biomaterials for medical applications, such as gels, sponges, and films.

Silk fibroin is biocompatible, sterilizable, and available in a variety of formats. Long-standing FDA regulatory approval of silk sutures, its abundance as raw fiber material, and its controlled proteolytic degradability in vitro and in vivo establish silk fibroin as an important biomaterial.

Recent studies demonstrate that silk coatings improve the mechanics and biocompatibility of implantable devices. Silk coatings can be applied before implantation, as a means of providing mechanical strength to a flexible device, or formed renewably in situ on conducting surfaces post-implantation. These coatings can be loaded with bioactive agents to promote tissue growth and control inflammation at the site of implantation.

Lead Investigator(s)

Fiorenzo Omenetto, David Kaplan, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University

Key Publication

Serban M.A. et al. J Biomed Mater Res Part A (2011), 98:567–575


Dynamic Silk Coatings for Implantable Devices: US Patent Application 14/112,078


Martin Son