Starfish may soon provide an unlikely treatment for inflammatory conditions such as asthma and arthritis, according to marine scientists.
A team from the Scottish Association for Marine Science have been studying the slimy substance that coats the spiny starfish. They found the slippery material was 'better than Teflon' at stopping debris from sticking to the creature that sits on the ocean floor, thus keeping it clean.
The researchers believe this non-stick property could provide a vital new weapon against inflammatory illness. These conditions are caused when the body's natural response to infections accelerates out of control. Infection-fighting white blood cells begin to build up in the blood vessels and stick to the sides, which can cause tissue damage.