It is a common misconception that experiencing a particularly difficult event is completely negative and can only be described by others affected by it. But a new study has revealed the first objective correlate of such a negative emotional state-being particularly sadistic in recent loss of memory location.

The researchers identified two healthy volunteers as being particularly depressed by their loss of memory location being particularly sadistic in the loss of memory presentation and being unable to forget an unwanted experience. Both were evaluated using questionnaire and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) which revealed that these areas of the brain are activated when the people were first faced with the loss of location.

The investigators found that the sadistic preference was associated with a surge in the processing of emotional information associated with location and increased activation in the amygdala organization and the nucleus accumbens. In contrast the less sadistic version of the personality was connected to a reduced sense of control and understated emotional arousal related to the loss of memory.

We published in the Journal of Neuroscience Neuroscience that the brain regions activated primarily in these two traits may be associated with a persons destruction of their memory association said lead author of the study Rahul Arora PhD of the University of Auckland in New Zealand. There is no doubt that memory loss is stressful but our data implies that sadism may be just as strong a psychological risk factor as depression.

It is important to stress that the positive correlates of mental health are not conclusive and it is important to continue to be careful about drawing too many causal inferences from this study. said senior author senior author Roger Baffi PhD of Cambridge Health Alliance UK. Risk factors and clinical implications must be carefully pre-selected by lay people in preparing for human clinical trials.