I write about the fascinating, bizarre, and exciting science that comes fresh out of the lab every day.
As a freelance writer, I focus on stories relating to health and science—the weirder the better—with a special interest in the brain. I've written about extreme measures to stop the aging process, electrically shocking the brain to improve memory, what eating the hottest chili pepper on earth does to your body, finding treatments for incurable diseases using CRISPR and stem cells, and diagnosing mental illness with an app. My work has been featured in The Atlantic, The Guardian, Fast Company, Scientific American, Discover, Science, Pacific Standard, and KQED, among others. I got my start writing through my blog, Brain Study, and the Nature Education blog Mind Read.
I also help universities and research organizations tell their stories of scientific discovery, the realities of lab life, and the personalities who make the magic happen. For several years, I worked as the communications and media relations specialist at the Gladstone Institutes, translating and promoting basic life science research to the public.
Before transitioning to a career in science writing, I was a research scientist and completed a PhD in Experimental Psychology from the University of Cambridge. There, I studied drug addiction and binge eating disorder using cognitive testing and functional neuroimaging.
Brain “Pacemaker” Could Help You Remember Only What You Might Forget
How to Hack an Intelligent Machine
Parents in a Remote Amazon Village Barely Talk to Their Babies—and the Kids Are Fine
Meet the Spiders That Completely Defy What We Know as Jet Lag
Can Synesthesia in Autism Lead to Savantism?
New Diabetes Monitors Require Fewer Pricks, Less Guessing
Before You Try the Ketogenic Diet, Read This
Capturing the Sound of Depression in the Human Voice
Blood From Young People May Be a Secret to Fighting Aging
Humans Can Smell 1 Trillion Scents
How a Pregnant Mother's Diet Could Change a Child's Brain
Anxiety About Certain Things Can Be Hereditary
Why Spend a Billion Dollars to Map the Human Brain?
This Is What Candy Crush Does to Your Brain
Spending More Time in the Dark Could Boost Hearing in Old Age
Cannabis and Memory Loss: Dude, Where's my CBD?
Drug Use, Decision-Making and the Blunders of Rob Ford
Are Oreos Really as Addictive as Cocaine?
The Business of Fasting
University of California, San Francisco
Brain’s Immune System May Be Key to Better Treatments for Psychiatric Disorders
The Mysterious 98%: Scientists Look to Shine Light on Our Dark Genome
Distinguishing Between Dementia and Depression with Neuroimaging
New Genetic Models of Autism Point to Cellular Roots of Disease
Study Reveals How the Songbird Changes Its Tune
Conducting the Brain's Symphony
CRISPR Is Transforming Biomedical Research
Reflecting on the Discovery of the Decade: Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Exploring Our Bacterial Ecosystem
Revealing How a Heart Becomes a Heart
Scientists Create Heart Cells Better, Faster, Stronger
Insulin-Producing Pancreatic Cells Created from Human Skin Cells
Old Drug Offers New Hope to Treat Alzheimer's Disease
Global Brain Health Institute
The Next Generation of Leaders Advocating for Brain Health
Using a drug-word Stroop task to differentiate recreational from dependent drug use
DG Smith, KD Ersche - CNS Spectrums, 2014
Overlapping decline in orbitofrontal gray matter volume related to cocaine use and body mass index
DG Smith, PS Jones, GB Williams, ET Bullmore, TW Robbins, KD Ersche - Addiction Biology, 2014
Enhanced orbitofrontal cortex activation and lack of attentional bias to cocaine cues in recreational stimulant users
DG Smith, PS Jones, ET Bullmore, TW Robbins, KD Ersche - Biological Psychiatry, 2014
Cognitive control dysfunction and abnormal frontal cortex activation in stimulant dependent individuals and their biological siblings
DG Smith, PS Jones, ET Bullmore, TW Robbins, KD Ersche - Translational Psychiatry, 2013
The neurobiological underpinnings of obesity and binge eating: A rationale for adopting the food addiction model
DG Smith and TW Robbins - Biological Psychiatry, 2013
Decision-making in children and adolescents: Impaired Iowa Gambling Task performance in early adolescence
DG Smith, L Xiao, A Bechara - Developmental Psychology, 2012