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KBLI tie up with Vietnam for creation and rearing of transgenic silkworms

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2015-06-18 17:00:00 – MICHIGAN

Kraig Biocraft Laboratories Inc., (KBLI) a US biotech firm and leading developer focused on the development and commercialization of spider silks based fibres announced that the company has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with a provincial government in Vietnam. The MOU outlines a framework for the creation and rearing of transgenic silkworms in Vietnam. Pursuant to the MOU, Kraig Labs and the Vietnamese provincial government will jointly develop a cooperative plan for the development and production of Kraig Labs trangenics in Vietnam.

This new relationship should bring new opportunities for both the Company and Vietnam. The company said that the goal of the agreement is the commercialisation of its technology for the technical textile markets. Spider silk is antimicrobial, hypoallergenic, and completely biodegradable.

Kraig Biocraft CEO Kim Thompson said that the central and provincial government officials in Vietnam with whom they held extensive meetings share their passion and vision for reinvigorating the silk industry.

Vietnam offers specialised silk infrastructure which is ideal for expanding their operations and its tradition of quality silk production makes it an excellent fit for transgenic silkworms. This cooperative effort will further serve to support their recombinant silk technology, its many applications and end markets.

The Company is continuing to work with the provincial government to develop advanced research and development facilities in Vietnam, as well as pilot production of transgenic hybrids. Negotiations for a final agreement incorporating the terms of the MOU are expected to conclude in the third quarter of 2015.

Kraig Biocraft Laboratories, a fully reporting biotechnology company, is a leading developer of genetically engineered spider silk based fibre technologies and claims a series of scientific breakthroughs in the area of spider silk technology.

In 2013, the company announced plans to launch its first commercial production program with the hatching of its first batch of 'Monster Silk' silkworms, while last year the company announced that Warwick Mills had created the world's first textile utilising its genetically engineered spider silk, Monster Silk. The pilot scale production facility recently delivered a batch of finished material and continues to produce Monster Silk for use and evaluation; the company says it anticipates significant growth in the capacity and proficiency of its silk production operations moving forward.

The company has also recently signed a new cooperative research and development agreement with the University of Notre Dame in a move aimed at accelerating the pace of development of transgenic silkworm technology and – it is hoped - producing stronger and more flexible fibres.

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