Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Web weaving skills provide clues to aging, spider study reveals

Date:
July 2, 2011
Source:
Society for Experimental Biology
Summary:
Young house spiders weave webs with perfect angles and regular patterns, but as they reach old age their webs deteriorate, showing gaping holes and erratic weaving. By using spiders as a simple model, new research may provide insight into how age affects behavior in other organisms, including humans.

Left: This web was woven by a 17-day-old spider, showing regular patterns. Right: This web was woven by a 188 day old spider, showing irregularity and holes.
Credit: Mylθne Anotaux

Young house spiders weave webs with perfect angles and regular patterns, but as they reach old age their webs deteriorate, showing gaping holes and erratic weaving.

By using spiders as a simple model this research may provide insight into how age affects behaviour in other organisms, including humans.

The reason web building skills are lost as spiders grow older may be due to degeneration of the central nervous system. PhD researcher, Mylθne Anotaux, from Nancy University in France, says "Our next steps will be to understand whether age-induced changes in the central nervous system are behind the differences in behaviour we have found."

"Because of the importance of understanding the underlying behavioural mechanisms of aging in humans, investigating simple animal models that assess aging mechanisms is essential," says Miss Anotaux.

This research, which is being presented at the Society for Experimental Biology Annual Conference in Glasgow, used a common European house spider Zygiella x-notata, its short life span (around 12 months) and simple nervous system making it an ideal organism to shed light on the complexities of how aging can affect behaviour.

The webs of the spiders were assessed throughout their lifetime using measures such as the regularity of web structure, angles between the strands and whether there were any holes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society for Experimental Biology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Society for Experimental Biology. "Web weaving skills provide clues to aging, spider study reveals." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 July 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110701203728.htm>.
Society for Experimental Biology. (2011, July 2). Web weaving skills provide clues to aging, spider study reveals. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110701203728.htm
Society for Experimental Biology. "Web weaving skills provide clues to aging, spider study reveals." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110701203728.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Monkeys Are Better At Math Than We Thought, Study Shows

Monkeys Are Better At Math Than We Thought, Study Shows

Newsy (Apr. 23, 2014) — A Harvard University study suggests monkeys can use symbols to perform basic math calculations. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) — A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur on Monday when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers. (April 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) — Drake University hosts 35th annual Beautiful Bulldog Contest. (April 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

805-Pound Shark Caught Off The Coast Of Florida

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) — One Florida fisherman caught a 805-pound shark off the coast of Florida earlier this month. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins