Dance, baby, dance! Test tube babies grow better with techno
The mean dad in Footloose was right, music is pretty darn good for making babies.
Playing techno beats to eggs in test tubes 24/7 helps them grow, boosts their fertility and ultimately improves their chances of becoming healthy embryos. A study out of Moscow at the Altra-vita clinic showed measurable improvement in success rates when they dropped the beat on test tube embryos with 24-hour techno. Pretty cool. Compared to test tube eggs that weren't given passes to a relentless dance party, the techno test tubes yielded womb-ready embryos slightly more often. It's currently uncertain if glowsticks were involved, but pacifiers seem like a sound inclusion for further studies.
The findings are good news for any hopeful parents going through the often stressful and agonizing trials of conception through in vitro fertilization. I'm no fan of techno, but if it's going to help make happy families, I'll gladly slap on my dancing shoes and hit the clubs with some test tubes babies. Although, I have a feeling I'd get stopped at the door.
It's not the first time the effects of music have been researched to further in vitro science. Timeless classics like Bach, Mozart, Madonna and Metallica all provoked growth spurts in test tube babies (test tubies?) back in 2013 when a group of Spanish scientist played, and I'm just guessing here: Tocata and Fugue in D Minor, Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Like A Virgin, and Enter Sandman, respectively.
But nothing has showed fertility results like the repetitive synth beats of techno. A pretty good argument to have in your back pocket if you're ever stuck justifying yourself after disappearing into a three-day techno dance party. No judgement here.
And if you're curious, it was Armin van Buuren's A State of Trance that was the scientific earworm of choice (although, test tube babies don't have ears yet). Regardless, van Buuren's popular dance track was selected for the "consistency of its pulse," which turns out is the key to more robust embryos.
So, how can test tube babies enjoy the dulcet tones of techno without ears? Vibes, man. Or rather, vibrations. Dr Dagan Wells, associate professor of obstetric and gynaecology at the University of Oxford, posits that techno beats may simulate womb movement in embryos and eggs who would otherwise be sitting in the static fluid of a petri dish. The musical agitation could help "mix the fluid in which the embryo is immersed, diluting potentially harmful chemicals excreted by the embryo and increasing exposure to important nutrients," something he says is a given in the gestating environment of a natural conception, due to the regular activity of a womb attached to a relatively mobile human. Busting a move (carefully), it seems, is good for womb babies too.
The findings, though beneficial and fun, especially if you're a techno lover trying to get preggers, aren't all that surprising. Countless studies have linked the benefits of musical vibrations to everything from faster plant growth, to calming animals, to improving the bonding, hearing, language skills and even cognitive function of infant humans. Playing music for babies in the womb and beyond is a cornerstone of development. So get musical with your brood early and often.
If you're not into techno, that's okay. But don't judge. It's making healthier babies and potentially happier families. Cue Last Night A DJ Saved My Life. Huh, who knew Indeep would turn out to be so prophetic?
Marc Beaulieu is a writer, producer and host of the live Q&A show guyQ LIVE @AskMen.