Microbe holds fast | Science News

Be a Champion for Science

Get your subscription to

Science News when you join.


Microbe holds fast

12:42pm, April 25, 2006

A common aquatic microbe makes a sticky substance that produces "the strongest biological adhesion ever discovered," says biophysicist Jay X. Tang of Brown University in Providence, R.I. The adhesive might lead scientists to new water-resistant glues.

The bacterium Caulobacter crescentus begins its life as a mobile, tail-sporting cell. As it matures, it loses its tail, or flagellum, and replaces it with a stalk that it uses to attach to rocks or other surfaces. The tip of the stalk secretes an adhesive made of sugars and proteins.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News