In the fight against skin cancer, scientists are looking to fish that dwell in sun-drenched areas of the world for answers.

Fish that naturally produce compounds called mycosporines use them to protect their eyes and tissues from harmful UV and UVB rays. Researchers have integrated these mycosporines in a natural polymer called chitosans made from crustaceans and insects. The result is an odorless, clear film that can be made in emulsions and is heat and water resistant.

Not only does this invention give rise to possible new sun creams made of natural ingredients, reducing the health and environmental impact of current chemical-derived creams, the application could be used in other areas where sun damage is a factor, like outdoor furniture.

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