Sergio Pistoi
Sergio Pistoi
Sergio Pistoi I am a freelance  science writer  and an award-winning  book author  with a PhD in molecular biology. My journalistic credits include Scientific American, Reuters, the New Scientist, Nature and many others.
Do microbes control our mood?
Do microbes control our mood? If aliens were to examine a human, they would think we were just slavish organisms designed to feed microbes and carry them around. Our bodies contain ten times more bacteria than cells , and there are an estimated 3.
Which is more wholesome: wild or farmed fish?
Which is more wholesome: wild or farmed fish? Choosing between wild and farmed fish is often a dilemma for consumers.  Wild-captured fish cost twice as much as their farmed counterparts ; a difference that many believe is justified by their better taste and nutritional properties.
Cyber attacks – Are smart cities safer or more vulnerable?
Cyber attacks – Are smart cities safer or more vulnerable? In the wake of the Brussels bombings, the French blogger Francis Pisani addressed the quandaries of modern, connected European cities facing terrorist threats .
The Social Life of Bricks
The Social Life of Bricks Mark Miodownik will never forget the day he became obsessed with materials. He was a schoolboy in 1985 when he was stabbed in the London Underground. “ When I saw that weapon in the police station later, I was mesmerized.
Power of the Sun. Dirt cheap
Power of the Sun. Dirt cheap In the late 1980s, the German-born chemist Michael Grätzel literally tied his name to an invention that is hailed as a  revolution in renewable energy .
Digging into the DNA for a successful diet
Digging into the DNA for a successful diet Genes are the latest trend in nutrition, at least going by the burgeoning  legion   of Internet companies offering diets tailored to our genetic make-up.  These services are relatively affordable and simple to use.
Marco Lodesani: Lessons from the Italian ban on pesticides
Marco Lodesani: Lessons from the Italian ban on pesticides Marco Lodesani is the director of the honey bee and silkworm unit at the Agricultural Research Council (CRA-API) in Bologna, Italy. He coordinated Apenet , one of the first study highlighting the role of neonicotinoids in Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
A sticky solution against beef bacteria
A sticky solution against beef bacteria If you can't kill them, trap them. Such is the fate that scientists are reserving to pathogenic bacteria, such as the infamous E. coli .
Genetic testing in the steak-house
Genetic testing in the steak-house Using state-of-the art genomics to predict whether a piece of beef will be tender enough may sound excessive.
Rust never sleeps: fighting corrosion with high-tech sensors
Rust never sleeps: fighting corrosion with high-tech sensors Temperature and humidity—two factors that influence corrosion— are routinely monitored in museums to protect the artifacts from the ravages of time.
Beauty is in the moth's eyes
Beauty is in the moth's eyes If you wear glasses, you are probably reading this article by looking through a tiny, transparent layer of nanomaterial.
Sander Dorenbos: seeing the (almost) invisible with nano-wires quality - part 1
Sander Dorenbos: seeing the (almost) invisible with nano-wires quality - part 1 Detecting a single photon may seem overkill for most purposes. However, looking at such tiny amounts of light is essential for researchers working  with quantum computers as well as for  chip manufacturers, just to mention two examples.
Floor van de Pavert: seeing the (almost) invisible with nano-wires quality - part 2
Floor van de Pavert: seeing the (almost) invisible with nano-wires quality - part 2 The story began a few years ago, when two scientists from the University of Delft (see related story) developed a way to double the efficiency of currently available single photons detectors.
Clare Arkwright: "Fuelling hopes for unplugged power supplies"
Clare Arkwright: "Fuelling hopes for unplugged power supplies" If you have been left high and dry by your iPad battery and unable to recharge it, you see  the problem. High tech gadgets, electronic appliances and electric cars have a well-know downside: sooner or later, you need to look for a plug - and a power grid- to keep them alive.
Tilmann Leisegang: "Towards a miniature X-ray laboratory"
Tilmann Leisegang: "Towards a miniature X-ray laboratory" More than a century after their discovery, X-rays still claim their place in medicine and science.
François Plais: “A spongy nanomaterial may change the way to monitor water quality” - part 1
François Plais: “A spongy nanomaterial may change the way to monitor water quality” - part 1 Heavy metals coming from industrial waste, such as mercury, lead, cadmium, nickel, and zinc are some of the most dreaded pollutants in water, and EU laws strictly limit their concentration in the water we drink.
Bram van der Gaag: "A spongy nanomaterial may change the way to monitor water quality" - part 2
Bram van der Gaag: "A spongy nanomaterial may change the way to monitor water quality" - part 2 When a group of researchers at the Ecole Polytechnique (EP) in Palaiseau , near Paris, created a new nanomaterial-based sensor for monitoring heavy metals in drinking water, they had to address a ...