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The Glue Crew

The Lab of Dr. Candido Diaz Jr. is an international collaboration of scientists interested in the characterization and evolution of bioadhesives. Specifically, the adhesive glues produced by moth-specialist spiders. These amazing bioadhesives have a lot to teach us about evolution and adhesion.

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Dr. John H. Long

Postdoctoral Advisor

Vassar College

John is Professor of Biology and Cognitive Science at Vassar College.  He is also a member of the Program in Neuroscience and Behavior, and is co-Director of the Interdisciplinary Robotics Research Laboratory.

John Roff.jpg

Dr. Cheryl Hiyashi

Collaborator - Genomic Analysis

American Museum of Natural History

Curator, Professor and Leon Hess Director of Comparative Biology Research
Director, Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics
Professor, Richard Gilder Graduate School


John Roff

Collaborator - Nature Guide

KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

John Roff is a Nature and Geology Guide with a life-long passion for South Africa's remarkable biodiversity, rocks and landscapes.

Dr. Akio Tanikawa

Collaborator - Ecology and Animal Husbandry

The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan

"My research theme is the taxonomy of spiders, especially on the families Liphistiidae, Araneidae, and Tetragnathidae. I am also interested in the phylogeography of these families.

The Spider Fellows

As part of our research plan, we hope to provide a graduate-level like experience to our undergraduate researchers. Our spider fellow students work with us for 2 years, first as an apprentice learning various experimental techniques within the lab. They then graduate to mentors, helping the next generation of fellows. We hope to give spider fellows research experience, leadership experience, and provide an avenue to test their own independent hypotheses.


The 2021 Spider Fellows sitting in a field, attracting moths with a lantern and an Ultraviolet light. left to right- Nathan Johnson, Celeste Weidemann, Huda Rahman, and Angela Clemens (far right). 


The 2022 Spider Fellows presenting research posters at the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Compartive Biology (SICB) left to right- Angela Clemens, Salih Elnour Salih Awouda, Dr. Candido Diaz, Ibrahim Waheed, Ayane Garrison, and Dr. John H. Long.

Dr. Candido Diaz and student Max VanDyke ('23) visit the New York Structural Biology Center and learn how to perform Cyro-EM to look at the protein structure of spider glues.

Other Lab Members

Max VanDyke

Max VanDyke ('23) is a biochemistry major at Vassar College. Here he is making plates for Cryo-EM analysis.

Samuel Bertrand

Samuel ('22) is a biology major from Hood River, OR with interests in biomechanics, physiology, and genetics. He enjoys taking walks at the Vassar Farm and Ecological Preserve, playing strategy games, and playing D&D in his spare time.


Izzy Magani


Isabella Migani ('21) is a biology major at Vassar College, and is interested in all things bug! (Especially spiders, spiders are the coolest).

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