Encyclopedia of Nanotechnology

Living Edition
| Editors: Bharat Bhushan

Spider Silk

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6178-0_269-2

Synonyms

Definitions

Silks are animal fibers (or more rarely ribbons or sheets) of proteinageous biomaterials that are, by definition, extrusion spun [1]. While the evolutionary origins and taxonomic placement of silk feedstocks can differ widely across the arthropods, filaments can be surprisingly similar [2]. Capture silks are sticky materials depolying either nanoscale filaments or aqueous glycoprotein glues that have evolved from dry silks [3].

Outline

Silks are fascinating biological products and have evolved several times independently in the arthropods. Spiders and moths are the best-known and best-studied of silk spinners, but there are others ranging from mites to bees [2]. In each taxon the diversity of silks has evolved in only one ancestor but then radiated quickly (over millions of years) into many different types fit for the various purposes required by the animal – be it integration into a cocoon composite or use as a single safety...

Keywords

Silk Fiber Silk Protein Spider Silk Dragline Silk Native Silk 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.
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References

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ZoologyUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK