When we say sponges, we usually mean commercial sponges. Sponges that keep their durability and softness once processed.
They are the sponges we all know and we use for daily care. We use them also in industry, painting, homeopathetic, birth control etc.
Non commercial sponges.
In fact, there are thousands kinds of sponges. At a tremendous number of sizes, shapes and colors.
Luckily, only 5 or 6 kinds are "valuable" and fished as commercial sponges. The rest considered as "no value" and left in place, for us to admire!
Following is a sample of non commercial sponges that we meet during our dives. Enjoy their colors and shapes!
New generation medicines from sponges!
The discovery of marine derived natural products, is a promising new field. By 2010 more than 15,000 new marine natural products (NMNP) were discovered.
Marine sponges are the richest sources of NMNP. With about 4851 compounds to date. Contributing to 30% of all marine natural products discovered so far.
Many studies have revealed a broad spectrum of biological activities for these compounds.
Including anticancer, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, antiprotozoal, anthelmintic, anti-inflammatory, immunosuppressive, neurosuppressive, neuroprotective, antifouling.
And a range of other bioactivities.