A modified chemical composition has been devised to improve the performance of the anode of a direct methanol fuel cell. The main feature of the modified composition is the incorporation of hydrous ruthenium oxide into the anode structure. This modification can reduce the internal electrical resistance of the cell and increase the degree of utilization of the anode catalyst. As a result, a higher anode current density can be sustained with a smaller amount of anode catalyst. These improvements can translate into a smaller fuel-cell system and higher efficiency of conversion.