UW Professor Signs Consulting Agreement with Kraig Biocraft
June 5, 2008 — Kraig Biocraft Laboratories Inc. announced June 4 University of Wyoming Professor Don Jarvis has agreed to a formal consulting relationship with the Lansing, Mich.-based company.
Jarvis and his research team in the UW College of Agriculture's Department of Molecular Biology are working to develop a novel system for the production of spider silk fibers.
"We view Dr. Jarvis's cutting edge efforts to develop novel protein production systems as a great complement to Kraig's high-strength polymers program," said Kraig Biocraft's chief executive officer, Kim Thompson.
Kraig Biocraft is a technology company focused on developing high-performance polymers and protein-based materials including spider silks for use in the multi-billion dollar technical fibers market, Thompson said.
Earlier this year, Jarvis joined UW molecular biology Professor Randy Lewis and University of Notre Dame molecular biology and genetics Professor Malcolm Fraser Jr. as members of Kraig Biocraft's Board of Scientific Advisors.
Jarvis's appointment to the board was made in anticipation of this consulting agreement, and he will retain his position on the board.
Jarvis said he proposed to develop a novel system for the production of spider silk fibers in a grant application to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as a potential way to extend the efforts of the Lewis laboratory to produce spider silk fibers for various biomedical applications, including sutures and artificial ligaments.
"The NIH grant proposal was funded for $397,000, and our team is starting the second year of research," Jarvis said of his laboratory's collaboration with the Lewis and Fraser teams.
Jarvis said he was pleased to join Lewis and Fraser on Kraig Biocraft's scientific advisory board.
"This will strengthen our opportunities to funnel basic research funded by the NIH into an effort to manufacture 'biomedically' relevant products in the private sector," Jarvis said.
Thompson called Jarvis a renowned inventor who has developed a variety of technologies for the production of biomedical relevant proteins, such as spider silk proteins.
"It was Dr. Jarvis's developmental work with spider silk polymers that first caught my attention," Thompson said.
Jarvis is the inventor or co-inventor of more than a dozen patented applications, including technologies related to the production of pharmaceuticals.
Additional information about Jarvis is at http://uwacadweb.uwyo.edu/uwmolecbio/Faculty/D_Jarvis.asp.
The Kraig Biocraft Web address is www.kraiglabs.com.