Designer Silk


The spider can tailor its silk to catch different kinds of prey—strong web to catch the ones that fly at high velocities and weak web to get those that walk on the ground. Researchers have found that the strength is not dependent on the inherent chemistry of the silk glue but on the design of the adhesive disc that the spider weaves.

This understanding, researchers say, can help create an adhesive that can be used to bind a fractured bone and also make a bandaid which binds lightly to the skin.


Down To Earth, October 2012