Monday, October 8, 2018


Image result for snail

Environmental & Science Education
Nature of Science
Edward Hessler

Nature/evolution has a long record of research and development.

Professor of medicine Jeff Karp at Brigham and Women's Hospital turns to the natural world for insights from nature's R&D, or as he calls this, "bioinspiration." His laboratory develops surgical materials based on ideas gleaned from watching critters or by "scouring Google Images, poring over papers, or by simply stepping outside the lab and taking a trip to the local zoo."

None of the materials are yet on the market (scaling up from bench to the surgical suite takes time) but among the materials developed in his laboratory "are staples with barbed tips like porcupine quills, a type of glue based on the sticky secretions of sandcastle worms and snails (I include a link on slugs), and a spiky adhesive tape inspired by a parasite called the spiny-headed worm."

Multimedia journalist Hyacinth Empinado reports on this work in STAT where there is also a video with Dr. Karp.

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