Massimo, molecular biologist, is constantly on a mission to inspire scientists and laypeople around him with his passion for science. During the time spent on the bench, he followed his natural all-around curiosity, investigating several topics from medical diseases to plant physiology. Head of TheScienceBreaker, Massimo proudly chases his naïve dream of an engaged society where scientists and citizens are facing together the upcoming challenges for human civilizations. At the University of Geneva, Switzerland, Massimo works for BiOutils – an academic and laboratory-based platform for outreach in life sciences.
Massimo is the editor of 102 Breaks:
Our bones: strength, flexibility and…fractals!
The combined hardness and toughness of bone cannot be explained by the mere mixture of proteins and calcium phosphate mineral. To solve this conundrum, a deeper insight into the structure of this remarkable material is required. Using advanced three-dimensional nanoscale imaging of the mineral in human bone, we highlighted the importance of its structural organization.Nov 16, 2018 | 4.5 min read
Gut bacteria orchestrate the transmission of overweight from mother to babe
Using gene-sequencing methods to identify infant gut bacteria in a large and representative Canadian birth cohort, we investigated birth mode and infant gut bacterial composition to better understand how maternal overweight during pregnancy could lead to future overweight in newborns.Nov 14, 2018 | 3 min read
Poorly protected areas: human impacts are destroying nature’s safeguards
We found that roughly one-third of the globally protected area estate (amounting to six million km²) is under intense human pressure. Governments around the world are claiming that their protected areas are set aside for nature, while at the same time approving huge developments inside their boundaries or failing to prevent illegal damage.Nov 7, 2018 | 4 min read
What were the ice age ‘stilt-legged’ horses of North America?
Were these extinct animals related to horses, donkeys, or zebras, or were they something else entirely? Using ancient DNA, we have finally solved this mystery.Nov 2, 2018 | 3.5 min read
Drive out the “bad bugs” to prevent colon cancers
There is a microscopic society living within us. Many of them reside in our gut. In some colon cancers, toxin-producing bacteria invade the mucus and form a sticky biofilm in the cells that line the colon. They upend the whole biology of the system, creating a little environment all their own with ill consequences for their hosts.Oct 31, 2018 | 3.5 min read
Making “hoppy” beer without hops
Tasty “hoppy” beer is increasingly preferred by consumers. However, the hop plant is a demanding crop and it varies considerably in essential oil content. A new approach reports how to confer the “hoppy” flavour by genetically engineering yeast.Oct 30, 2018 | 3.5 min read