Biomedical Technology and Imaging

Simon Ametamey


Prof. Dr. Simon M. Ametamey
Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Animal Imaging Center-PET, ETH Zurich

Research Focus: Research in our group focuses on the development of positron emission tomography (PET) radiopharmaceuticals for the diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases in the central nervous system (CNS). Specific research activities include the glutamatergic and the cannabinoid neurotransmission systems. Several established CNS PET ligands are also routinely synthesized and applied for drug development and studying brain functions.

Keywords: PET radioligand, in vivo imaging, drug development, glutamatergic and cannabinoid neurotransmission systems

Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging

Publications: pubmed



Daniel Brandeis


Prof. Dr. Daniel Brandeis 
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Zurich, University of Zurich

Research Focus: We focus on mapping brain functions and plasticity in typical development, neurodevelopmental disorders, and treatment with electrical and multimodal imaging (EEG-fMRI, MRS, with S. Brem). Clinical projects cover longitudinal brain mapping in common neurodevelopmental disorders like Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), aggression and Dyslexia. We characterize timing, localization and genetics (with E.  Grünblatt) of compromised networks as endophenotypes as state dependent deficits during rest, attention, inhibition, reward processing, or print tuning etc.  For clinical translation we focus on neurofeedback and biofeedback training (with R. Drechsler), and evaluate potential biomarkers using multimodal approaches.

Keywords: ADHD, dyslexia, OCD, conduct disorder, development, plasticity, functional brain mapping, EEG, ERP, fMRI, MRS,  neurofeedback, biofeedback, longitudinal studies, reading, attention, genetics, gene x environment interactions.

Topics: Disorders of the Nervous System, Development and Regeneration, Cognitive Neuroscience, Biomedical Technology and Imaging

Publications: pubmed





PD Dr. sc. ETH Markus Christen

Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine & UZH Digital Society Initiative, University of Zurich
Research Focus: The Neuro-Ethics-Technology research group of the Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine investigates research topics at the interfaces of ethics, neuroscience/-psychology and information technology. We use both empirical and normative methodologies in currently nine different research projects. Those research fields are: research on moral intelligence components, family life, health & moral development, brain death and transplantation, serious moral games, ethics of neuromodulation, moral decision making and autonomous systems, Big data ethics, visualizing morally loaded data, cybersecurity and ethics.

Keywords: neuroethics; deep brain stimulation; brain death; big data ethics; moral psychology; ethics of information technology
Topics: Biomedical Technology; Cognitive Neuroscience; Motor Systems






PD Dr. med. Dr. med. dent. Dominik Ettlin

Center of Dental Medicine, University of Zurich

Research Focus: Our clinical focus is the biopsychosocial evaluation and management of patients suffering from athrogenic, myogenic and neurogenic trigeminal pain disorders. The interdisciplinary team includes dentists, physicians, psychologists and neuroscientists.

We aim at better understanding peripheral and central pathomechanisms underlying these disorders, utilizing primarily functional magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy (fMRI and fMRS). We developed several MR-compatible setups for reliable stimulation of extra and intraoral structures.

We are also interested in behavioral aspects of pain. By collecting multicenter clinical data, we analyze potential pain etiologies and modifying factors.

Keywords: trigeminal sensory system, nociception, (orofacial) pain, brainstem and cortical pain fMRI, fMRS, questionnaires, clinical pain trials

Topics: Sensory Systems, Neural Basis of Behavior, Disorders of the Nervous Systems, Biomedical Technology and Imaging, cognitive neuroscience

Publication: PubMed



Tommaso Fedele


Dr. Tommaso Fedele, Junior Group Leader

Dept. of Neurosurgery, University Hospital Zurich

Research Focus: High frequency oscillations (HFO, f > 80 Hz) in intracranial EEG have been shown as a promising biomarker of of the epileptogenic zone. We standardize the detection of clinically relevant HFO in pre-operative and intra-operative invasive EEG to improve surgery outcome. We aim to extend HFO detection to non-invasive scalp EEG, using a low-noise custom-made EEG device. We also investigate epilepsy dynamics and cognitive processing at multiple spatial scales recording EEG and  single unit activity in the mesial temporal lobe.

Keywords: neurophysiology; epilepsy; high frequency oscillations; single unit activity

Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging


Roger Gassert


Prof. Dr. Roger Gassert
Rehabilitation Engineering Lab, Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich

Research Focus: We apply robotics, wearable sensor technology and non-invasive neuroimaging to the exploration, assessment and restoration of sensorimotor function, with the goal of promoting recovery following neurological injury and developing assistive technologies for the compensation of remaining deficits.

Keywords: physical human-machine interaction, rehabilitation robotics, haptics, assistive technology, neural control of movement, neuroimaging, neurofeedback

Topics: Sensory Systems, Motor Systems, Disorders of the Nervous System, Biomedical Technology and Imaging




Anke Henning


Prof. Dr. Anke Henning
Institute for Biomedical Engineering, ETH Zurich and Max Planck Institute of Biological Cybernetics, Tuebingen, Germany

Research Focus: Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS) allows for non-invasive and non-ionizing determination of tissue concentrations and metabolic turn-over rates of more than 20 metabolites and compounds in the human brain and body. Hence MRS has established as an important tool for physiological research and clinical diagnostics. The focus of this research group is the development of novel MRS and other metabolic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) methods. To that a comprehensive approach is followed that aims at optimization of hardware, scan sequences and quantitative data analysis methods to fully exploit the potential of clinical and ultra-high field strength MRI systems. We apply our novel methodology for clinical biomarker screening and for pathophysiological modelling of brain, spinal cord and heart disease including psychiatric disorders, multiple sclerosis, tumors and traumatic injury.

Keywords: brain metabolism, clinical decision support, biomarker screening, spinal cord

Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging




Alexander Huber


Prof. Dr. med. Alexander Huber
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, University Hospital Zurich

Research Focus: In our laboratory for biomechanics of hearing we develop a comprehensive understanding and a detailed theoretical model of the physiological and pathological processes of the peripheral auditory system (from the pinna to the auditory nerve).

The objectives are 1) Experimental studies of physiological and pathological processes of hearing, 2) The development of a detailed mathematical model of hearing, and 3) The optimization and development of hearing aids and hearing prostheses in collaboration with the industry. We are an interdisciplinary research team of graduates from different specialties, with competence in investigation techniques of acoustics, vibro-mechanics, fluid dynamics, electrophysiology and behavioral audiometry by taking into account the latest measurement technology.

Keywords: Hearing, Biomechanics, Implants

Topics: Sensory Systems, Biomedical Technology and Imaging


Jakab Andras


PD Dr. Dr. med. András Jakab, Junior Group Leader
Center for MR-Research, University Children’s Hospital Zurich
Research Focus: Our research focus is studying normal and pathological human brain development using non-invasive medical imaging approaches, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) prenatally and in early postnatal life. We aim to understand how common congenital disorders affect brain development, and how these manifest in clinical symptoms. We are interested in utilizing the latest computational image analysis approaches to improve data quality, and to construct models of human development. We also support interdisciplinary clinical research projects that consist of radiologists, neonatologists, neurosurgeons and basic scientists.

Keywords: magnetic resonance imaging, brain development, fetal development, image processing

Topics: Disorders of the Nervous System, Biomedical Technology and Imaging



Jan Klohs


Dr. Jan Klohs
Institute for Biomedical Engineering, University and ETH Zurich

Research Focus: Our research aims at developing novel non-invasive imaging techniques for the characterization of preclinical models of brain diseases. A major scientific focus is to elucidate the role of vascular dysfunction, an aberrant coagulation, inflammatory and neurodegenerative processes on brain function in cerebral ischemia and Alzheimer`s disease. To this end, we employ imaging techniques like near-infrared fluorescence imaging and magnetic resonance imaging as well as develop novel molecular imaging probes to generate a variety of target-specific, potentially translatable read-outs. For validation of the imaging marker relevant experimental and genetic mouse models of human disease, pharmacology, biochemical and immunohistochemical techniques will be employed. Since the investigated processes are generic the generated imaging marker might be applicable to a number of brain diseases.

Keywords: Near-infrared fluorescence imaging, magnetic resonance imaging, preclinical models of brain diseases

Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging

Publications: pubmed


Spyros Kollias


Prof. Dr med. Spyros Kollias
Neuroradiology Clinic, University Hospital Zurich

Research Focus: 

i) High-resolution structural imaging of neural tissue in vivo: a) imaging CNS myeloarchitecture with clinically relevant applications, using DTI, b) application of advanced techniques (MRS, DTI, Perfusion MRI), for increasing the specificity of MR technology

ii) Multimodal imaging and connectivity mapping of degenerative CNS disease: a) functional organization of the motor and visual systems and their post-lesional reorganization, b) developing imaging and metabolic biomarkers in dementias, b) neuroimaging of migraine, c) functional analysis of brain plasticity and functional recovery of function in paraplegia, d) multimodal imaging in schizophrenia.

iii) Advanced imaging of the spinal cord: including high-resolution structural MRI, MRS, and DTI with applications in oncological, traumatic and neurodegenerative pathologies.

Keywords: Neuroimaging, MRI, functional brain mapping, MR Spectroscopy, Brain connectivity, multimodal imaging.

Topics: Biomedical Technology and Imaging, Cognitive Neuroscience, Disorders of the Nervous System

Publications: pubmed


Vartan Kurtcuoglu


Prof. Dr. Vartan Kurtcuoglu
The Interface Group, Institute of Physiology, University of Zurich

Research Focus: My group’s goal is to address clinical needs through the convergence of engineering, biological and medical research. Within the neuroscience field, we focus on transport processes in the fluid spaces of the brain, namely in the cerebrospinal, interstitial and perivascular fluids. By combining computational techniques with experimental methods, we aim to understand the dynamics of cerebral fluid motion, the driving forces behind these and how they, along with the associated transport processes of metabolites and other substances, are involved in the pathogenesis of CNS disorders

Keywords: volume transmission, fluid dynamics, hydrocephalus, astrocyte network, mechanosensing

Topic: Computation and Modeling, Biomedical Technology and Imaging, Disorders of the Nervous System




Klaas Prüssmann


Prof. Dr. Klaas Prüssmann
Institute for Biomedical Engineering, University of Zurich and ETH Zurich


Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging



Robert Riener


Prof. Dr. Ing. Robert Riener
Sensory Motors Systems Lab, Dept of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich and Paraplegic Center, University Hospital Balgrist Zurich

Research Focus: Robert Riener and the members of his Sensory-Motor Systems (SMS) Lab investigate the sensory-motor actions in and interactions between humans and machines. The research focuses on the study of human sensory-motor control, the design of novel mechatronic machines, and the investigation and optimisation of human-machine interaction. Riener’s Lab has developed famous rehabilitation robots (such as the ARMin) and virtual reality technologies applied to the area of neurorehabilitation. Main application areas are the fields of neuro-rehabilitation and sports. R. Riener is also the initiator and organiser of the Cybathlon 2016 in Kloten, Zurich.

Keywords: Neurorehabilitation, rehabilitaiton robotics, motor learning, control of motion, biomechatronics
Topic: Motor Systems, Biomedical Technology and Imaging


Markus Rudin


Prof. Dr. Markus Rudin
Institute for Biomedical Engineering, University of Zurich and ETH Zurich


Topic: Biomedical Technology and Imaging



Johannes Sarnthein