Ugly Cures *suitable for home teaching*

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Chemicals within the cells of living things may provide the basis of a host of treatments in the fight against disease. Two hundred different secretions with medical properties have been isolated from frog skins alone, including antibiotics which could be used to treat resistant strains of disease such as MRSA. This video highlights examples of chemicals found in nature which are being trialled in different countries. These include: using spider venom to treat cancer, a poison produced by the cone snail used in pain relief medicine and how an endangered coral provides the key to a revolutionary sunscreen pill. The video also looks at creatures such as the salamander which is able to grow a new limb and how this could impact research into the regeneration of body parts. When a species dies out all of the potential treatments are lost with it. The clip ends in a question which asks children to research household medicines which have come from nature. An ugly animal challenge sheet is provided which contains ideas for further researching ugly animals. These resources were produced by the British Science Association for the National Science + Engineering Competition.

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