The intact slime might be useful for us as well. “The synthetic hagfish slime may be used for ballistics protection, firefighting, anti-fouling, diver protection or anti-shark spray,” says biochemist Josh Kogot in a Navy statement. The slime of one species of hagfish is already used by humans. Hagfish, also called Northern hagfish, slime hag and slime eel, are elongated, eel-shaped, bottom-dwelling marine organisms. That’s quite a few potential applications. Pacific hagfish (Eptatretus stoutii), commonly known as "slime eels," are the target of a statewide re-emerging commercial fishery.These fish get their nickname from the ability to produce a protein-based, mucous-like slime when agitated. Their skin makes a sticky and protective slime that is made of mucus and strong threads of protein. Once targeted during the late 1980s for the Asian "eel skin" trade, Pacific hagfish are now used for food in a few Asian countries, particularly in Korea. Hagfish slime is an extremely diluted hydrogel, consisting of over 99.99 percent water. The idea would be to use the slime like the hagfish do, deploying it in the face of approaching predators. Researchers hope to use the protein threads to make a fabric. For hagfish slime, extremely rapid expansion not only key to building slime, it is the difference between life and death. They are characterized by soft, scale-less skin and four pairs of tentacles (barbells) surrounding the mouth and opening for the nasopharyngeal duct, used … Hagfish have one feature that is potentially very useful for humans. Hydrogels are used in a multitude of everyday products including diapers, moisturisers and contact lenses.
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