Pascale Cossart, Fabrice Hyber

The Great Voyage among Microbes Publication date : April 28, 2021

Pascale Cossart, professor at the Institut Pasteur, recipient of many international awards, is permanent secretary of the French Academy of Sciences. Her work focuses on the clarification of the strategies of intracellular pathogenic bacteria – in particular Listeria – and their mechanisms of regulation.

She is the author of La Nouvelle microbiologie. Des microbiotes aux CRISPR (The New Microbiology: From Microbiota to CRISPR)

Pascale Cossard’s book, as its title suggests, proposes a “voyage into the world of microbes,” written for a very wide audience: children are not the only ones who will find themselves among microbes as if in an unchartered land…

The book enables the reader to explore this universe of viruses and bacteria, alongside a knowledgeable and instructive guide who provides clear and precise answers to basic questions. What is a microbe, a virus, a cell, a protein, an enzyme? What is the difference between a virus and a bacterium? Is it true there are giant viruses? What is a protozoa? A blob? Do all microbes make us sick? How do vaccines work? What is fermentation?

There are many questions; the author provides answers that are concise, concrete, and always accessible.

The book covers an extensive landscape, going from the nature of microbes to their role in nutrition, in the environment, and in health.

The text is richly illustrated with many drawings that facilitate the reader’s understanding.