Seminar Series: Spider Venom
Spider Venom: new technologies yield insights into an ancient predatory adaptation
Spiders are amongst the largest groups of venomous animals, using their toxic venom to incapacitate prey and deter predators, and to frighten a significant fraction of humanity. Venoms are complex concoctions containing a range of compounds, including numerous proteins that target diverse aspects of prey physiology to achieve their ends. Given their complexity, most venoms are not fully characterized, but this problem is amenable to solution by newer high-throughput approaches in transcriptomics and proteomics, identifying novel targeted insecticides or drug leads. The data derived from high-throughput approaches can also be used to study the roles of processes such as gene duplication, positive selection and changes in gene regulation in venom evolution.
Robert Haney, Ph.D
Adjunct Faculty, First Year Program