Ali Pattillo
Ali Pattillo
Ali is a health and science reporter based in New York City. Previously, Ali covered health at CNN with Dr. Sanjay Gupta. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School in 2019 and Dartmouth College in 2017.Source
New York City, NY
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Scientists discover the reason why anxious people smoke marijuana

Scientists discover the reason why anxious people smoke marijuana

When we’re stressed or anxious, we tend to turn to things that make us feel better — and for some, that means cannabis. In fact, this is one of the primary reasons for smoking weed or taking CBD, according to a 2009 study on young adults. But despite its popularity as a salve for anxious brains, scientists don’t know how the chemicals in marijuana work to calm anxiety — but the discovery of a molecule that affects an anxiety-producing super-highway in the brain could hold the key. In a study published this week in the journal Neuron, scientists describe a powerful molecule called 2-AG,...

January 14, 2020
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This underrated type of intelligence could predict academic success

This underrated type of intelligence could predict academic success

Bagging a perfect SAT score and all-A grade results often means months spent poring over prep books and completing hundreds of practice problems. But one key factor for academic success won’t be found in the pages of a textbook — emotional intelligence. Successful students don’t just have high IQs — they are also better able to understand and manage their emotions effectively than their peers, a new meta-analysis suggests. Along with other non-cognitive factors like and being hardworking and detail-oriented, emotional intelligence equips students to thrive academically. They better regulate...

December 13, 2019
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Frequent marijuana use could literally change a person's heart

Frequent marijuana use could literally change a person's heart

Sports leagues, state legislators, and universities are changing the way they treat and punish marijuana use largely because the drug is increasingly perceived as harmless. But preliminary research suggests cannabis may have a dangerous side effect on one critical organ: the heart. The new study, which evaluated the health of 3,407 people in the United Kingdom, suggests a link between regularly using marijuana — defined as daily or weekly use within the past five years — and changes to the heart’s structure and functions. It was published Wednesday in the journal JACC Cardiovascular...

December 21, 2019
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2 million-year-old ancient human skull fossils rewrite the “story of us”

2 million-year-old ancient human skull fossils rewrite the “story of us”

“This is ultimately the beginning of the story of us, as the great generalists, able to live in all different environments on Earth." Deep beneath the dust of the Cradle of Mankind, in the rolling hills northwest of Johannesburg, South Africa, archaeologists discovered a treasure trove of insights into the lives of our human ancestors. For over a century, scientists have carefully excavated fossils which reveal how our ancient cousins lived, fought, loved, and even walked. Now, unusual skull fragments and a constellation of fossil clues challenge the very core of the story of our human...

April 2, 2020
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Lab-grown mini-livers bring us closer to an organ donor-free future

Lab-grown mini-livers bring us closer to an organ donor-free future

In a fascinating new study, scientists created fully-functional mini-livers out of human skin cells, then successfully transplanted them into rats. The research is a proof-of-concept for potentially revolutionary technology and provides a glimpse of an organ donor free future. "I believe it's a very important step because we know it can be done," co-author Alejandro Soto-Gutiérrez, a regenerative medicine researcher at the University of Pittsburg, tells Inverse. "You can make a whole organ that can be functional from one cell of the skin." About 17,000 people are currently waiting for a...

June 2, 2020
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