Navigation Links
Stanford researcher sheds new light on the mysteries of spider silk
Date:2/6/2013

e. It is a remarkable picture of the behavior of one of nature's most intriguing structures.

Surprises

Among the team's findings is that stiffness of a web is not uniform, but varies among isolated fibers, intersection points, and glue spots. For a structure formed supposedly of uniform spider silk, this was a bit of a surprise.

Evolutionarily, the researchers theorize this variation is advantageous to the spider in creating webs that are stiffer in some locations and more elastic in others. They think this might help the web withstand the elements and to better absorb the energy of captured prey.

Another surprise came when Koski looked at supercontraction. In high humiditywhen it rains or in the morning dewspider silk absorbs water, causing unrestrained fibers to shrink by as much as half, likely due to molecular disorganization caused by the water. It a curious response for something so key to a spider's survivability and it has raised some debate in the scientific community as to why nature would have favored supercontraction.

Scientists have posited three explanations for supercontraction. First, some think it is a mechanical constraint inherent in the molecular structure of silk, not an evolutionarily evolved phenomenon and that it has no bearing on the performance of a web. It's just a fact of spider silk. The second theory is that supercontraction helps the spider tailor the silk as it is being spun to meet varying environmental and structural requirements. Or, lastly, that supercontraction helps tighten the web when it gets wet, preventing the heavy water droplets from dragging the web down and preventing the spider from catching any prey.

Until this paper, the last theory could not be tested because researchers had no way to probe complete webs. With their clever technique, Koski and team were able to measure the elastic response of silk during supercontraction. They found that the silk, which is
'/>"/>

Contact: Andrew Myers
admyers@stanford.edu
650-736-2245
Stanford School of Engineering
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Stanford geoscientist cites critical need for basic research to unleash promising energy sources
2. Stanford scientists build the first all-carbon solar cell
3. Gladstone, Stanford scientists block toxic protein that plays key role in Lou Gehrigs disease
4. The 2013 HFSP Nakasone Award goes to Stephen Quake of Stanford University
5. Stanford bioengineer Christina Smolke wins NIH Directors Pioneer Award
6. Stanford researchers discover the anternet
7. Stanford expert brings climate change science to heated Capitol Hill
8. Stanford-Penn State scientists use microbes to make clean methane
9. Stanford-SLAC team uses X-ray imaging to observe running batteries in action
10. Stanford researchers calculate global health impacts of the Fukushima nuclear disaster
11. Stanford scientists find molecule to starve lung cancer and improve ventilator recovery
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Stanford researcher sheds new light on the mysteries of spider silk
(Date:12/17/2014)... , Dec. 15, 2014  HITLAB SM announced today ... to confirm its adherence to current U.S. Food and ... conduct regulated smart device and smart phone application trials ... quality. "HITLAB is determined to improve global ...
(Date:12/17/2014)... Dec. 16, 2014 Research and Markets ( ... "Global Chemical Sensor Market 2015-2019" report to their ... One major trend upcoming in this market is ... Chemical sensors help in recording of patient data for ...
(Date:12/15/2014)... , Dec. 12, 2014 Research and Markets ... "Global Facial Recognition Market 2015-2019" report to ... Facial recognition is a technology used for ... overall facial feature of a person such as nose, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):HITLAB Completes GCP Audit for FDA Smart Device & App Compliance 2Global Chemical Sensor Market 2015-2019: Key Vendors are Abbott Laboratories, Bayer, Hoffmann La-Roche, Johnson & Johnson, NGK Spark Plugs and Robert Bosch 2Global Facial Recognition Market 2015-2019: Key Vendors are 3M Cogent, Cognitec Systems, NEC and Safran Group 2Global Facial Recognition Market 2015-2019: Key Vendors are 3M Cogent, Cognitec Systems, NEC and Safran Group 3
... Soybean production has continued to increase in the Northeast ... the crop and many experienced growers planting alongside corn crops. ... with a corn planter in 30-inch rows instead of 7.5-inch ... a Cornell University scientist, investigated the response of two soybean ...
... L. Boren announced today that OU is establishing an ... expertise to benefit Oklahoma and the nation, including emerging ... led by a national expert, who will be appointed ... million gift from Corix, a multi-utility infrastructure company, which ...
... grant totaling $2.2 million shows how the University of ... using technology to advance the cutting-edge field of personalized ... their genetic make-up. The grant also highlights the ... Institute (CCTSI) to bring scientific discoveries to the bedside ...
Cached Biology News:OU establishes a new water and sustainability institute 2OU establishes a new water and sustainability institute 3Personalizing medicine 2Personalizing medicine 3
(Date:1/22/2015)... Switzerland (PRWEB) January 22, 2015 Selexis ... characterized mammalian Research Cell Banks (RCBs) used for drug ... Research Cell Banks will include Next-Generation Sequencing ... genetic architecture de-risks biologic manufacturing by ensuring the integrity ...
(Date:1/22/2015)... , Jan. 22, 2015   GenoSpace , a precision medicine ... to enable the broad use of genomic, imaging and other ... appointment of Michelle Munson , CEO of Aspera, an ... Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150122/170713 "We ...
(Date:12/24/2014)... , Dec. 24, 2014  Vermillion, Inc. (Nasdaq:   ... disease, announced today that the Company closed its ... Investment Management, Jack W. Schuler , Birchview ... were $10.5 million, before offering expenses.  The proceeds ...
(Date:12/24/2014)... SoundConnect’s 2015 next generation ... communication technology, provide continued education and inform users ... demonstrates online communication features and benefits; empowering users ... innovative and powerful tools. , According to SoundConnect’s ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Selexis Generated Research Cell Banks Now Fully Sequenced Using Next-Generation Sequencing 2GenoSpace Expands Board with Appointment of Michelle Munson 2Vermillion Announces Closing of Equity Financing 2Vermillion Announces Closing of Equity Financing 3SoundConnect Launches Leading Edge Business Communications Webinar Series 2SoundConnect Launches Leading Edge Business Communications Webinar Series 3
... Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ONXX ) announced ... has granted fast track designation for carfilzomib, a next ... with relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma. The Fast Track ... the development, and expedite the review of drugs to ...
... SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 31, 2011 DNA Direct, a ... MHS ) and a leading provider of ... that Aspirus Wausau Hospital of Wausau, Wisconsin, Atlantic Health ... Rochester, Michigan and Swedish Covenant Hospital of Chicago, Illinois, ...
... Frontier Global Sciences, a leading scientific laboratory ... today it has expanded its capabilities to include ... instrument. The purchase of a Perkin Elmer Nexion ... ICP-MS services including standard quadropole, true dynamic reaction ...
Cached Biology Technology:Onyx Pharmaceuticals Receives Fast Track Designation for Carfilzomib; Company Initiates Rolling NDA Submission for Accelerated Approval 2Onyx Pharmaceuticals Receives Fast Track Designation for Carfilzomib; Company Initiates Rolling NDA Submission for Accelerated Approval 3Onyx Pharmaceuticals Receives Fast Track Designation for Carfilzomib; Company Initiates Rolling NDA Submission for Accelerated Approval 4Four Community Hospitals Join DNA Direct's Genomic Medicine Network 2Four Community Hospitals Join DNA Direct's Genomic Medicine Network 3