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"Super Sun Protection Clothing" Can Resist Cosmic Radiation

In the hot summer, many women will use a sunshade when going out. The purpose of this is to prevent the skin from being tanned, but also to reduce the damage to the skin caused by ultraviolet rays in the sun. In October 2017, the World Health Organization distributed a list of carcinogens, in which ultraviolet light was included in a category of carcinogens. It can be seen that if human skin is exposed to ultraviolet radiation for a long time, it will increase the possibility of skin cancer.
In space, astronauts face more radiation risks, because there are not only invisible ultraviolet rays in the universe, but also invisible radiation such as gamma rays and X-rays. According to reports, recently biochemist Nathan Gennesky from Northwestern University in Illinois, USA, and his team used skin pigments to develop an artificial melanin that can prevent X-rays. So how did Janeski and his team develop this product? What is the effect of this product?

What Kind of Radiation Exists in Space?

As we all know, the spacesuits worn by astronauts can not only provide oxygen for them, but also protect them from the ultra-low temperature in the universe. In addition, the most important function of spacesuits is radiation protection. The reason for this effect is that there is too much radiation in the universe. First of all, most celestial bodies emit electromagnetic waves. Second, stars like the sun not only emit ultraviolet light, but also radiate high-energy particles.
In addition, there are many types of celestial bodies in the universe, such as pulsars and neutron stars. They also emit X-rays and gamma rays. All the rays mix together to form cosmic rays. NASA has conducted research on the effects of cosmic rays on the human body and found that cosmic rays can cause DNA breaks in the human body, which can cause cancer. If the dose of cosmic rays exceeds the limit, it may cause human deaths due to radiation, so astronauts need special radiation protection suits when performing missions in space.

How Did Ganeski's Team Develop A "Super Sunscreen"?

Although the earth's atmosphere has blocked a large amount of cosmic radiation outside, there is still a lot of radiation falling from the sky every day. At this time, the melanin in the living body comes into play. Interestingly, melanin not only exists in humans and animals, but also in plants, fungi, and bacteria. Among them, animal melanin is mainly divided into two types, one is eumelanin and the other is melanin-like pigment. The effect of eumelanin makes human skin and hair appear dark, while melanoid pigment makes hair and skin appear light.
Ganeski and his team once saw a study on animal melanin in the New Science Journal. The study pointed out that melanoids are more efficient than eumelanins in absorbing X-rays, so they decided to start with melanoids. Research a substance that can strengthen radiation protection. At first, they extracted melanoid pigment from the red feathers of roosters, and then replaced the sulfur element with selenium, because studies have shown that selenium is more effective in preventing cancer.

How Effective Is The Sunscreen Substance?

After adding selenium, they developed an unprecedented selenium melanin, and then began to verify this new melanin. The results of the experiment showed that even though the X-rays used had reached a life-threatening dose, the mice injected with selenium melanin were not harmed by X-rays, and the mice without any protective measures died. The experiment shows that the product they developed is effective.
According to Ganeski, selenium melanin is like propping up a pair of miniature parasols on the skin of animals, thereby greatly reducing the damage of X-rays to the skin. As for whether selenium melanin has the same preventive effect on other radiation, it needs to wait for further research and demonstration.
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