Previous WeekMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridayNext Week

../Morning Post
Posted December 8 2011

Ted Talks

Cheryl Hayashi: The magnificence of spider silk

Cheryl Hayashi studies the delicate but terrifically strong silk threads that make up a spider's web, finding startling applications for human use.

Biologist Cheryl Hayashi is fascinated with spiders and their silks, and for good reason. Made of a mix of proteins, spider silks come in thousands of variations; there are over 40,000 species of spiders, with many spiders capable of producing half a dozen types. Some silks have the tensile strength of steel -- and often are much tougher -- while remaining light as air and extremely supple. And spiders use their silk in diverse ways: to make their homes and trap their food, to travel, to court and to protect their eggs.

In her lab at UC Riverside, Hayashi explores spider silk’s genetic makeup, evolution and unique biomechanics (winning a MacArthur “genius" grant for it in 2007). Her work blurs the boundary between biology and materials science, looking for the molecular basis of this wondrous material and exploring how humans might learn from it. Hayashi's work may inspire new biomimetic materials for a huge variety of uses, from biodegradable fishing lines and sutures to superstrong ropes and armor cloth.

Submit press release to - Editor Jon Rohr - Content published on this site represents the opinion of the individual/organization and/or source provider of the Content. is non-partisan, online journal. Privacy Policy. Copyright of Exchange produced editorial is the copyright of Exchange Business Communications Inc. 2011/*.*. Additional editorials, comments and releases are copyright of respective source(s) and/or institutions or organizations.


Contact an Exchange Representative

Current Issue: November/December 2011
Receive Exchange Online Now

Submit Press Release
Visitor Centre
Advertising Inquires
Tel: 519.886.0298

Subscribe to Exchange Magazine Print Edition

Contact Information:

Exchange Business Communication Inc.
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Tel: 519.886.0298

Jon Rohr

Account Manager

John Hobin