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Mussel muscle: Nature’s super glue

In an effort to find new adhesives that don’t contain chemicals such as benzene, toluene, acetone and phenol, an engineering team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has developed an all-natural alternative based on a common bivalve.

The team claims that the glue is the world’s strongest protein-based underwater adhesive inspired by nature.  That nature is the mussel.  By analyzing what makes mussels so good at anchoring themselves to objects underwater, the team copied both the proteins from the bivalves and bacteria to create an engineered glue.

Mussels exude a sticky layer of proteins that have a chemical composition conducive to sticking to almost anything, including Teflon.

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