The starch grains obtained from the fruit of Zea mays occur in the form of powder or irregular, angular, white masses, insoluble in both water and alcohol, but swelling into a colloidal "paste'' when boiled in water.

Action and Uses: Dry starch is used as a dusting and drying powder and also as a diluent for other more active substances. The mucilage produced on boiling, with water or glycerol is employed as an emollient and protective; as a cataplasm, and as an antidote to iodin poisoning. The starches from other cereals, from cassava and the potato have practically the same medicinal properties as corn-starch.