The market value of wool is limited by the fact that consumers place increasingly high demands on machine wash ability and soft handle. Felting, which is a typical property of wool due to the configuration of the scales of the wool fibre, is a serious problem, especially during washing. Chlorination, followed by polymer deposition, is commonly used to confer shrink-resistance, but this involves major drawbacks with respect to chlorine and the environment. The main aspect of this proposal is to develop a novel enzymatic process for producing machine washable wool by limiting the enzymatic degradation of wool fibres to their cuticle scales. The novel engineered enzymes will be developed to achieve this goal. The radically new bioprocessing regimes for wool scouring and finishing processes, and commercial products will be developed. This would be a major technological breakthrough to completely replace a hazardous chemical preparation and finishing route.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
BB3 2EB Darwen
5971 LW Grubbenvorst
HD3 4JD Huddersfield
1791AE Den Burg