Spider and centipede venom evolved from insulin-like hormone

11 junio 2015

Funnel-web spider venom contains powerful neurotoxins that instantly paralyze prey (usually insects). Millions of years ago, however, this potent poison was just a hormone that helped ancestors of these spiders regulate sugar metabolism, similar to the role of insulin in humans. Surprisingly, this hormone’s weaponization occurred in arachnids as well as centipedes, but in different ways.