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Nutty News: Eco-Sunscreen Made from Cashew Shells

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A “green” sunscreen has been synthesized from discarded cashew-nut shells by a team of scientists from South Africa, Malawi, Tanzania and Germany, reports the European Journal of Organic Chemistry. Using xylochemistry (wood chemistry), the scientists produced new aromatic compounds that show good UVA and UVB absorbance, which can protect humans, as well as polymers and coatings, from harmful rays from the sun. The research was published in the European Journal of Organic Chemistry. UV rays can lead to sunburn, premature aging and the development of lethal melanomas in humans and animals, and are also damaging to most materials, causing the discoloration of dyes and pigments, weathering, yellowing of plastics and the loss of gloss and mechanical properties.

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