Skrillex Dubstep could protect against mosquito bites, says study

Dubstep tracks by DJ Skrillex could offer effective protection against mosquitoes according to a new scientific study.

An international team of scientists assessed the effects of electronic music on the Aedes aegypti – known as the yellow fever mosquito. This species is known to spread dangerous and sometimes life-threatening diseases, including the Zika virus and dengue fever, in tropical regions of the world.

The team carried out their study by subjecting the insect to a specially selected song and then testing its rates of movement, blood feeding and copulation.

"Sound and its reception are crucial for reproduction, survival, and population maintenance of many animals,” the researchers wrote.

"In insects, low-frequency vibrations facilitate sexual interactions, whereas noise disrupts the perception of signals from conspecifics [members of the same species] and hosts."

Mosquito deterrent: DJ Skrillex
Mosquito deterrent: DJ Skrillex

The team chose Skrillex hit Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites for the track's mix of very high and very low frequencies.

According to the results, published in the journal Acta Tropica on 25 March, adult mosquitoes "entertained" by the music "copulated far less often" than those that weren’t.

Females exposed to the track also attacked hosts less frequently than those in a dubstep-free environment, and "the occurrence of blood feeding activity was lower when music was being played".

"The observation that such music can delay host attack, reduce blood feeding, and disrupt mating provides new avenues for the development of music-based personal protective and control measures against Aedes-borne diseases," the report concludes.

Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites peaked at number 77 in the UK official streaming chart on its release in 2010 but has sold more than 2,000,000 units in the US, where it won best dance recording at the 54th Grammy Awards.

Skrillex, real name Sonny John Moore, did not respond to requests for comment. However, he retweeted an article about the study on Twitter, writing: “YEAAHHHH” followed by a string of emojis.

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