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Understanding the Mechanisms Behind Feelings of Rejection
Narrator: This is Science Today. A recent study conducted by the University of California, Berkeley found that rejection can trigger the primal fight-or-flight response in people with low self-esteem. Study leader Ozlem Ayduk says their work may lead to intervention strategies and future studies may delve further into rejection.

Ayduk: At a societal level, rejection can elicit a lot of negative reactions with serious consequences for the society. There was recent literature review of the recent school shootings. Most of them were preceded by either chronic or acute teasing, rejection, exclusion, bullying by peers and the rejection-aggression link is pretty well established.

Narrator: So, anything that explains why some people who get rejected become aggressive is an important task for Ayduk and her colleagues.

Ayduk: The next step is of course if you can understand the mechanisms that lead to it, we can maybe intervene in those mechanisms and reverse the cycle.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.