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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 182 Breaks:

Unexpectedly stalled: the dynamics of brain blood flow in Alzheimer’s disease

A reduction in brain blood flow is a long-known symptom of Alzheimer’s disease that has remained unexplained. Using mouse models of Alzheimer’s, we discovered the cellular mechanism that causes this brain blood flow reduction and further showed that increasing brain blood flow improves memory function.

Sep 19, 2019 | 3.5 min read
When gut bacteria spoil drug treatment

In many cases, doctors do not know why one patient responds well to a drug, while another experiences significant side effects for the same drug. We found that bacteria living in the gut can be partially responsible for such differences: they can break down certain drugs to small molecules that cause serious complications during drug therapy.

Sep 18, 2019 | 3.5 min read
A four-legged ancestor led the way for early whales dispersal

The discovery of a four-legged whale in nearly 43 million years old marine deposits of coastal Peru provides insights on the early dispersal of modern whales, dolphins and porpoises' ancestors to the Americas. We could assess the timing of this dispersal, the route taken, and the locomotion abilities, of these early, hoofed-bearing amphibious whales.

Sep 16, 2019 | 4 min read
Ice sheet melting: it’s not just about sea level rise

Climate change is causing the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets to melt, which releases cold, fresh meltwater into the nearby ocean. This meltwater causes sea level rise, but a lesser-known side effect is the disruption of deep ocean currents and climate patterns worldwide. Our modelling study investigated these processes.

Sep 13, 2019 | 4 min read
All guts, no glory: ingested microplastics in marine mammals

Microplastics (pieces less than 5 mm in size) have now been discovered in a wide range of aquatic habitats, from deep-sea sediments to seemingly pristine tropical beaches. Their small size and omnipresence mean that microplastics can be eaten by animals at the base of the food chain as well as larger animals.

Sep 11, 2019 | 4 min read
Predators drive the evolution of multicellularity

Multicellular life is one of the most astonishing wonders on Earth, but why and how does it arise in the first place, and at what cost? To help answer these questions, we exposed single-celled algae to predators and watched them evolve into multicellular life. Within a year, they had formed groups of cells to avoid being eaten - but at a price.

Sep 10, 2019 | 3.5 min read