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Dr. Akira Ohkubo

In-house Scientific Editor

About Akira

Akira has always been captivated with the art of storytelling. He soon realized that he could merge this interest with his scientific career. For example, how would you explain what DNA is to a 5 year old child? He believes that questions like this can be clearly answered by using metaphors and stories which can be easily understood by everyone. Since science is one of the best ways to uncover the beauty of our world, Akira aims to bring this message across by sharing exciting and elegant scientific stories with TheScienceBreaker.

Akira is the editor of 32 Breaks:

Awake or dreaming: how brain ‘noise’ tells the difference

Monitoring brain electrical activities helps us discern brain states. But understanding how we sleep is not easy. While deep dreamless sleep brings easily recognized rhythmic electrical waves, light dream sleep shows arrhythmic patterns and looks similar to wakefulness. We discover that the often-ignored background brain ‘noise’ can help distinguish these similar brain states.

Mar 22, 2021 | 3.5 min read
What genetics teaches us about living a long and healthy life

Studying the genetic information of exceptionally long-lived people may allow us to uncover the secret of their healthy ageing. Combining data from large genetic studies across different longevity-related features, we discover new genomic regions that may play a key role in a long and healthy life.

Mar 16, 2021 | 4 min read
Deep-sea mining may threaten microbial communities

Deep-sea mining may soon become a new source of valuable metals, the important components of modern tech. It is becoming commercially viable, but what about its ecological impact? We reveal that deep-sea mining could significantly damage microbes, and it would take decades for microbes to recover their population size and functions.

Mar 15, 2021 | 3.5 min read
The stars that time forgot remember the youth of our Milky Way

Born more than ten billion years ago, the early life of our Milky Way galaxy remains mysterious. Recently we discovered the Phoenix Stream, the remnants of a cluster of stars on the verge of destruction. The stars of the Phoenix Stream are old, formed in the first instances of the Galaxy, providing a new window on our Milky Way’s evolution.

Mar 12, 2021 | 4 min read
Could COVID-19 decide our climate future?

The COVID-19 pandemic has been dynamically reshaping our lifestyle and society. Despite huge drops in global pollution as people stayed at home, our study reveals 2020’s initial lockdowns had little effect on the climate. The challenge now is to use this knowledge to create a global green economic recovery, which will help us avoid the most dangerous climate change.

Mar 10, 2021 | 4 min read
How your body knows to shout ‘ouch’

Why is holding hands enjoyable but stubbing fingers painful? Our body judges whether a physical force is “dangerous” depending on its intensity to decide if it is worth feeling painful to protect itself against additional damage. Here, we discover a long-awaited novel pain sensor in the skin.

Mar 5, 2021 | 3.5 min read