Silkworms could aid a breakthrough in tissue engineering

Dyed silk

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Scientists at the Institute of Materials Research and Engineering in Singapore have discovered a way to change the colour of silkworms and the silk that they spin.

A special chemical dye is added to the silkworm's normal feed, which is then incorporated into the molecules of the silk.

This could lead to a breakthrough in the field of tissue engineering, helping to create artificial replacement skin, cartilage and even vital organs.

The Health Show is broadcast on BBC World News on Saturdays at 1010 and 2010 GMT and on Sundays at 0710 and 2310 GMT. The programme is supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

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