Silk Biomechanics and Spider Behavior Lab

Curriculum Vitae


Blackledge Laboratory

     Our research focuses on the interface between animal behavior,  evolutionary processes, and materials science. Most of my students and myself study web weaving spiders because these spiders provide unique opportunities to integrate behavioral research across many levels of biological organization - from the DNA that codes for silk proteins to the biomechanical properties of silk threads to the function of webs spun from those silk threads.


Current research

  • role of biomaterial vs. behavioral innovation in species diversification
  • evolutionary ecology of spider webs
  • biomechanics and molecular biology of spider silk
  • molecular phylogenetics of spiders



     I actively encourage undergraduate students to pursue their research interests in my laboratory. Click on the Research link to the left to see a few recent undergraduate projects.
     Graduate students interested in either MSc or PhD research in my laboratory should contact me via email or phone.




Todd Blackledge
Department of Biology
University of Akron  
Akron, OH  44325-3908

(330)-972-7264  blackledge<at>



Home | People | Research | Teaching | Curriculum Vitae | Publications | Links

This site was last updated 04/02/09