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Scientists Discover More About 'Feel-Good' Gene

A genetic mutation found in about 20 percent Americans makes them less anxious and more resilient. (Moyan Brenn/Flickr)
A genetic mutation found in about 20 percent Americans makes them less anxious and more resilient. (Moyan Brenn/Flickr)

Can one particular genetic mutation explain why some people are more anxious and less resilient than others?

Scientists at the Weill Cornell Medical College studied a gene mutation discovered about 10 years ago that only about 20 percent of Americans have. It bathes the brain in a sort of ‘natural cannabis.’

The New York Times is calling it the “feel-good gene,” because of the correlation between the mutation and a lack of anxiety, and an ability to bounce back.

The Cornell researchers wanted to know if there was more than a correlation.

Francis Lee, professor of psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College, joins  Here & Now’s Robin Young to discuss how knowing whether a person has the genetic mutation might help in treating anxiety disorders.

Guest

  • Francis Lee, professor of psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College.

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