PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A Maine company thinks lobster blood can play a role in new drugs.

The company, Lobster Unlimited of Orono, is investigating whether lobster blood can be used as a potential weapon against viruses and cancer, and representatives say results are promising.

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued the company a patent in late October related to its work, which would use the crustaceans for a purpose far removed from dousing them in butter.

The company, headed by a longtime lobster scientist Robert Bayer, proposes to use compounds derived from lobsters' circulatory fluid to improve human health.

Bayer wants to partner with a drug company.

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