Mosquito repellent tested on soldiers is effective in providing protection against coronavirus, according to preliminary research

A platoon of the British Army on the attack at West Tofts Camp in Norfolk, England, while participating in Exercise Dynamic Victory.

Joe Giddens / Zuma Press

A mosquito repellent containing Citriodiol, which was sprayed on soldiers in April, has been shown to provide protection against COVID-19, according to a preliminary military report published yesterday in the United Kingdom.

The eight-page paper produced by the Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) in the UK declared Mosi-guard, a Citriodiol-based spray, was tested on both plastic and artificial skin.

The study showed: “There was evidence that the Mosi-guard Natural® treatment on latex synthetic skin affects the survival of the virus over a period of four hours.” But it was unclear whether the spray was more effective than hand washing and mask wearing.

The scientists said the experimental work has not been externally peer-reviewed. They did not disclose how many soldiers were part of the experiment. The military scientists share their preliminary findings in the hope that further research will be conducted.

Citriodiol has been effective in killing earlier forms of coronavirus.

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British Defense Secretary Jeremy Quin was cavalier about the investigation, and was reported as saying: “Dstl’s latest investigation shows that sprays containing Citriodiol, made available to MOD units involved in the COVID response, are the virus can kill.

“We are sharing our preliminary findings today so others can take additional research to confirm and expand our findings.”

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The Defense Science and Technology Laboratory is based at Porton Down in Salisbury, in the south of England, and is an executive office of the Ministry of Defense dedicated to science and technology in the field of defense and security.

It provides specialist services to the ministry and wider government, and is run through commercial lines.

Details of the investigation were first reported by Sky News.