Nearly all corn and soybeans grown in the US are genetically modified. Above, activists take part in a march against US agrochemical giant Monsanto and GMO foods in Los Angeles. Photograph: Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

The discovery of the molecular structure of the genetic material DNA in 1953 revolutionised understanding of the molecular basis of life. Many prac(...)

Chief concerns with the way scientists do research include inadequate understanding of statistics, publishing studies that can’t be reproduced because they used shoddy procedures or didn’t have enough data, or because they ‘spun’ the data to please sponsors. Photograph: Thinkstock

The1960 Nobel laureate in physiology or medicine, Peter Medawar, famously remarked in 1983: “In terms of fulfilment of declared intentions, science(...)

‘The 1998 study by Andrew Wakefield [above] and others that linked autism to the MMR vaccine has been comprehensively debunked by now’. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by impaired social interaction, impaired verbal and nonverbal communication, and restricted, rep(...)

In a 2003 experiment, ‘short-changed’ monkeys became upset. Above, a capuchin monkey. Photograph: Thinkstock

Humans and other primates have evolved a moral sense of right and wrong, of fairness and unfairness, and are prepared to endure personal sacrifice (...)

Does music help us to deal with cognitive dissonance? Photograph: Thinkstock

The human ability to create and enjoy music has puzzled the finest minds since Aristotle. Even Charles Darwin was unable to explain how music evolved (...)

Research shows that feelings of loneliness increase risk of death by 26 per cent, lack of social connections increases risk of death by 29 per cent and living alone increases risk of death by 32 per cent. Photograph: Thinkstock

Take the case of a young man or woman who is a modest smoker, obese, takes no exercise and has no friends. What is the single most effective step that(...)

Physicist Lee Smolin contends that cosmologists should test hypotheses against the properties and history of our universe

A common scientific interpretation proposes that our universe is just one of an infinite number of universes, the “multiverse”, with each universe end(...)

 The World Health Organisation says that, when it comes to cancer, no amount of alcohol is safe

The Public Health (Alcohol) Bill, to be enacted by the end of 2015, will include many measures aimed at tackling overconsumption of alcohol in Ireland(...)

In the whole-class teaching method, the teacher stands at the blackboard, teaches the whole class the established body of knowledge, tests the children with questions and ensures a disciplined class environment. This type of teaching was the norm in Ireland until the 1960s. Above, schoolchildren in the west of Ireland in 1955. Photograph: Three Lions/Getty Images

Substantial reports warn us that educational attainment at all levels is declining in English-speaking countries (; OECD Reports (...)

Bad news for those who regularly run marathons or ultra-marathons: such running can damage your health. Photograph: Thinkstock

There is much evidence that regular aerobic exercise will significantly reduce your chances of contracting a variety of serious health problems, in(...)