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Massimo Caine

About Massimo

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 266 Breaks:

Capturing the past using DNA from Sacred Ibis Mummies

Millions of Egyptian Sacred Ibis were found mummified and stored in vast catacombs. Thoth priests sold the mummified Ibis to pilgrims for offerings. Did they mass farmed the Ibises? Our analysis of the bird’s DNA did not identify the tell-tale genetic signs of farming. Priests tamed Ibises by feeding them.

Jul 6, 2020 | 3.5 min read
Your biological age within a drop of your blood

When is aging occurring? Why do I look younger/older than my age? What is my biological age? These are just a few questions that can be answered using a single drop of your blood!

Jul 3, 2020 | 3.5 min read
Life after death? Fossil survival strategy rediscovered in living corals

Corals are impacted by climate change worldwide. Monitoring the Mediterranean coral Cladocora caespitosa during 16 yrs allowed us to discover that some colonies were able to recover after warming-induced death. The recovery was possible thanks to rejuvenescence, a survival strategy only known from extinct fossil corals. It was described for the first time in a living coral.

Jul 2, 2020 | 3.5 min read
Climatic Changes for Earths in Sun-like Stellar Binaries

Climate cycles are influenced by the changes in a planet's axial tilt or obliquity. Stellar binary companions can alter a planet's obliquity quite substantially through gravitational tugs. The climate on an Earth twin orbiting Alpha Centauri B is especially vulnerable to large changes in obliquity, and a large moon doesn't help. Telescopes could soon identify the spin and tilt of nearby planets.

Jun 29, 2020 | 3.5 min read
Groundwater pumping poses worldwide threat to riverine ecosystems

We pump too much water out of the ground, impacting our rivers worldwide. Our study estimates that almost 20% of the catchments where groundwater is pumped for drinking water or to grow food suffer from low flows - too low to sustain healthy freshwater ecosystems. This number is expected to increase to 50% by 2050.

Jun 25, 2020 | 3 min read
Treating Alzheimer's disease with a known anticoagulant: insights from lab mice

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder with vascular alterations such as reduced brain blood flow. Treatment with a direct oral anticoagulant available in the market delays the onset of AD in mice: animals did not show memory loss or decreased cerebral circulation, and they presented reduced brain inflammation, vascular damage, and decreased amyloid deposits, typical signs of AD.

Jun 23, 2020 | 3.5 min read