Culture

In many countries, human empowerment - including freedom of expression and action - tends to increase people's generalised trust in other people, particularly strangers. However, such an increase is usually gradual, reaching its peak in affluent, modernised democracies. In contrast, in countries with below-average levels of development, people, especially educated ones, often demonstrate a lack of trust in strangers, according to researchers of the Higher School of Economics.

Life on our planet might have originated from biological particles brought to Earth in streams of space dust, a study suggests.

Fast-moving flows of interplanetary dust that continually bombard our planet's atmosphere could deliver tiny organisms from far-off worlds, or send Earth-based organisms to other planets, according to the research.

The dust streams could collide with biological particles in Earth's atmosphere with enough energy to knock them into space, a scientist has suggested.

COLUMBUS, Ohio--A study of a Lake Erie wetland suggests that scientists have vastly underestimated the number of places methane-producing microbes can survive -- and, as a result, today's global climate models may be misjudging the amount of methane being released into the atmosphere.

In the journal Nature Communications, researchers at The Ohio State University and their colleagues describe the discovery of the first known methane-producing microbe that is active in an oxygen-rich environment.

The first observation of a super-hydrated phase of the clay mineral kaolinite could improve our understanding of processes that lead to volcanism and affect earthquakes. In high-pressure and high-temperature X-ray measurements that were partly conducted at DESY, scientists created conditions similar to those in so-called subduction zones where an oceanic plate dives under the continental crust. The transport and release of water during subduction causes strong volcanic activity.

Countries with populations that value autonomy and harmony tend to have higher average levels of alcohol consumption than countries with more traditional values, such as hierarchy and being part of a collective. This new research finding, published today in open-access journal Frontiers in Psychology, may have important implications for international public health organizations aiming to tackle problems associated with alcohol consumption.

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Recovering populations of killer whales, sea lions and harbor seals on the West Coast have dramatically increased their consumption of chinook salmon in the last 40 years, which may now exceed the combined harvest by commercial and recreational fisheries, a new study finds.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Centuries of study have yielded many theories about how the brain gives rise to human intelligence. Some neuroscientists think intelligence springs from a single region or neural network. Others argue that metabolism or the efficiency with which brain cells make use of essential resources are key.

WOODS HOLE, Mass.--Using a simple "mirror trick" and not-so-simple computational analysis, scientists affiliated with the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) have considerably improved the speed, efficiency, and resolution of a light-sheet microscope, with broad applications for enhanced imaging of live cells and embryos.

Slight changes to the system for allocating deceased-donor kidneys could result in higher rates of organ procurement and lead to more kidney transplants across the country, according to new research co-authored by an Indiana University Kelley School of Business professor.

"Any increase in supply will result in saved lives," said Rodney P. Parker, an associate professor of operations management at Kelley. "The lists of patients awaiting a kidney transplantation are lengthy and growing. Many of these patients undergo expensive and inconvenient dialysis treatment while waiting."

URBANA, Ill. - Handling a poorly timed tantrum from a toddler--such as in the middle of the grocery store--is never an easy task. It could serve as a teachable moment for a mom to help her child learn to manage his own emotions. After all, research shows that how parents react in these types of situations can play an important role in a child's emotional development.

But how does that child's negative behavior -- that tantrum in the frozen food aisle -- affect a mother's own stress level, and therefore, her ability to parent?