C-MOULD, is the world’s largest collection of microorganisms for use in the arts and design, with over 50 different kinds of microorganism. We have bacteria and fungi that glow in ethereal shades of green and blue light, bacteria that make gold and electrically conductive nanowires, and bacteria that produce biotextiles. We also possess the largest collection of pigmented bacteria.
C-MOULD’s BIOprosepectors (that’s just me at the moment) are continually exploring the microbial world for innovative functions/materials. Here are just a few of them.
AZOTEX. This material is in early development but could prove to be C-MOULD’s most innovative material. It’s produced from Azotobacter vinelandii and is based on alginate. This bacterium grows on a very simple solution of salts and fixes nitrogen so a garment made from this material would take nitrogen from the air and convert it into biofertilizer. The ultimate in sustainable textiles
LEVANX. A thin biomaterial produced by Pseudomonas fluorescens. Could be used for ultra thin biocompatible condoms?
GXCELL: Pure bacterial nanocellulose. This is produced from a hyper-cellulose producing strain of Gluconoacetobacter xylinus. It’s pure nanocellulose and offers vastly improved tensile properties compared to Kombucha
PROKARYLON. A unique biomaterial made from auto-woven bacterial peptidoglycan fibrils. It’s very fragile so at the suggestion of CSM Fashion Futures student Zuzan Gombasova is being developed as a unique bacterial felt-like material. A type of BioDown with insulation properties
PENCAMEX, in the foreground, is a mould based biomaterial. White in colour it is enzymatically active and thus self cleaning . Swathes of biomaterials that have just been harvested. PENREX in the background.
Close up of PENREX showing its hydrophobic/water repelling properties. The water forms a bead and rolls off
PENREX: A textile that can be grown simply on the surface on milk. Chitinous in origin, this fungal material has powerful hydrophobic properties and repels water