This ongoing investigation aims to learn from nature novel material organizations and structural systems in order to develop innovative architectural system. We developed a multidisciplinary approach, using scientific analysis and design research and prototyping. We focus on the study of a “living fossil” fish, whose armor system is so efficient it has remained almost unchanged for millions of years. We investigate its morphological characteristics, its structural properties, the assembly mechanisms and the underlying material properties in order to derive new principles to design new enhanced structural systems. We use micro computerized tomography and scanning electron microscopy to observe microstructures, parametric design to reconstruct the data into digital models and then several 3D printing technologies to prototype systems with high flexibility and adaptive capabilities, proposing new gradual material interfaces and transitions to embed performative capabilities and multifunctional potentials.