On the occasion of the eightieth anniversary of Eraldo and Maria Margherita: Donors of the Non-Profit Biomedical Research Center of San Felice del Benaco, Italy

The 8th of July 2023 marked a joyous occasion of celebration for the couple Eraldo and Maria Margherita, who respectively reached the ages of 80 and 78. This special event was organized to pay tribute to the founders of the Biomedical Research Center in San Felice del Benaco, who inherited and invested in the property with the aim of transforming it into a non-profit Foundation for Research.

In the past, biomedical research in Italy was primarily entrusted to public institutions. However, in recent decades, non-profit organizations have played an increasingly important role in biomedical research, particularly regarding genetic and rare diseases.

An article from 1998 published in the prestigious international scientific journal “Nature,” titled “Italian Charity offers an alternative to the concorsi,” authored by Alison Abbott, editor of the “Science and Culture” section, highlighted how Italian non-profit organizations provide a valid alternative to public competitions held by research institutions. Subsequently, two other articles published in the same journal in 2003 and 2006, titled “Science academies: Time for an Italian renaissance?” and “Saving Italian Science,” emphasized the delicate relationship between Italian public entities and biomedical research, highlighting how collaboration and mutual assistance between non-profit research entities and the public system have led to a resurgence.

Non-profit laboratories provide job opportunities for recent graduates who often struggle to find employment due to the scarcity of public competitions. Additionally, they can represent an opportunity for Italian researchers who wish to return to their country after a period abroad.

In this context, the MAGI group stands out, which, after more than 17 years since its foundation, continues to grow steadily in terms of revenue, research activities, and number of employees. The Research Center in San Felice del Benaco, founded by Eraldo and Maria Margherita, who host the MAGI group at this location, was the focal point of this celebration where researchers paid tribute to their significance.

During the event, distinguished musicians were present, including the Piano Maestro CorradoRuzza, soprano Martina Bortolotti, and baritone Davide Piva, who delighted the guests with their marvelous performances.

It is important to underline that San Felice del Benaco and the entire Lake Garda region have always been places of great inspiration for art and music. Numerous renowned artists and historical figures have praised the beauty of this region, as evidenced by important citations.

Lake Garda has garnered admiration from personalities such as Dante Alighieri, Gabriele d’Annunzio, Mario Luzi, Percy Bysshe Shelley, John Keats, and D.H. Lawrence, who found inspiration and peace in this enchanting place. Even Sir Winston Churchill, in addition to being a prominent politician, portrayed the beauty of the lake in some of his most famous works.

Furthermore, from this research center in San Felice del Benaco, the heart of Italian culture, cuisine, and the Mediterranean diet, the spin-off MAGISNAT was born, with headquarters in Peachtree Corners, Georgia, United States. The spin-off aims to bring not only research but also culture and the Mediterranean diet to the United States, as well as harnessing the benefits of omics sciences to personalize dietary integration. Additionally, it seeks to promote opera and classical music, which already generate great interest in the United States. Thanks to the appreciation for Italian opera in the USA, the Italian language continues to thrive and cannot be considered a “dead language.”

In conclusion, the solemn celebration of the eightieth anniversary of Eraldo and Maria Margherita represented a special moment to honor their contributions to the Research Center in San Felice del Benaco. This event also highlighted the crucial role of non-profit organizations in biomedical research in Italy and emphasized the beauty and inspiration that Lake Garda has evoked over the centuries for internationally renowned artists. Lastly, the establishment of the MAGISNAT spin-off in the United States represents an important step forward in promoting Italian culture and scientific research in the fields of nutrition and cuisine beyond national borders. Our Italian headquarters can serve as a resource for organizing residential courses for individuals from the USA who wish to delve into topics such as nutrition and genomics, the Mediterranean diet, and Italian opera and concert music.

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