Secrets of Mussels' Clinginess, the Future of Surgical Suture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Study

Published: Jul 24, 2013

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Unlike barnacles, which cement themselves tightly to the surfaces of rocks, piers or ships, the clamlike bivalves called mussels dangle more loosely from these surfaces, attached by a collection of fine filaments known as byssus threads. This approach lets the creatures drift further out into the water, where they can absorb nutrients -- although in the process, it exposes them to the risk of being torn away by the force of crashing waves.

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