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Human skin mixed with spider silk can halt bullets

Since bulletproof vests comprise 33 layers of Kevlar, using more layers of spider silk could prove more effective in stopping a bullet.

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DNA Web Team

Updated: Mar 11, 2018, 04:18 AM IST

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Synthetic spider silk blended with human skin produces a material that can halt rifle bullets at half their muzzle velocity.
 
It is the work of Dutch artist Jalila Essaïdi and cell biologist Abdoelwaheb El Ghalbzouri. The latter said that spider silk is three times stronger than Kevlar, the mainstay of bulletproof vests worn in conflict zones.
 
Since bulletproof vests comprise 33 layers of Kevlar, using more layers of spider silk could prove more effective in stopping a bullet, Ghalbzouri said.
 
He and Essaïdi see more potential for the blended skin and silk when it comes to developing skin grafts for burn patients, the Daily Mail reports.
 
"This skin is much stronger and tougher than regular skin...you can also make much larger pieces of skin this way," the artist said.
 
"The layers of spider silk embedded in the skin allow the cultivation of larger sheets of tissue which literally outgrow their petri dishes," added Essaidi.
 
Some studies show that incorporating regular silk in burn wounds encourages faster healing and less scarring, she said, so now she wants to see whether incorporating spider silk in the treatment of burn wounds has similar results.

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