Spider silk proteins are synthesized in the silk-producing glands, where the spidroins are produced, stored and processed into a solid fiber from a crystalline liquid solution. Despite great interest in the spider silk properties, that make this material suitable for biomedical and biotechnological applications, the mechanism of formation and spinning of the silk fibers has not been fully elucidated; and no combination of proteomic and transcriptomic study has been carried out so far in the spider silk-producing glands. Nephila clavipes is an attractive orb-web spider to investigate the spinning process of silk production, given the properties of strength, elasticity and biocompatibility of their silk fibers. Thus, considering that the combination of proteomic and transcriptomic analysis may reveal an extensive repertoire of novel proteins involved in the silk spinning process, and in order to facilitate and enable proteomics in this non-model organism, the current study aims to construct a high quality reference mRNA-derived protein database that could be used to identify tissue specific expression patterns in spider silk glands. Next-generation sequencing has offered a powerful and cost-efficient technique for the generation of transcriptomic datasets in non-model species using diverse platforms such as the Illumina HiSeq, Roche 454, Pacific Biosystems, and Applied Biosystems SOLiD; and mass spectrometry analysis allows large proteome surveys including post-translational modification (PTM) studies and comparative analysis, where quantities of hundreds or thousands of proteins can be compared between various conditions. In the current study, the Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform will be used to generate a N. clavipes spider silk glands transcriptome-based protein database. Moreover, PTMs searches will be performed using Modiro PTM Explorer 1.1 software, which is not available in Brazilian laboratory, to verify PTMs of the spidroin proteins. The transcriptome data generated in this study will provide a comprehensive and valuable genomic resource for future research of the group of spider silk-producing glands, in order to improve our understanding of the overall mechanism of action involved in production, secretion, storage, transport, protection and conformational changes of spidroins during the spinning process, and prey capture; and the results may be relevant for scientists in material Science, biology, biochemistry, and environmental scientists.
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