The horseshoe crab plays a vital, if little-known, role in the life of anyone who has received an injectable medication. An extract of the horseshoe crab's blood is used by the pharmaceutical and medical device industries to ensure that their products, e.g., intravenous drugs, vaccines, and medical devices, are free of bacterial contamination. No other test works as easily or reliably for this purpose. Read more detail.
PS: No harming of horseshoe crabs was done in this photo. This little guy had already croaked when I found him. There were many beached along the shore this morning, not sure if that is normal...anyone?