Cognitive Neuroscience

Dominik Bach

 

Prof. Dr. phil. Dr. med. Dominik R. Bach
Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, Psychiatric Hospital, University of Zurich
dominik.bach@uzh.ch

Research Focus:  Emotions are adaptive response syndromes that exist in humans, and non-human animals. Our knowledge on the molecular and neuronal basis of defensive emotions such as panic, learned fear, and anxiety, mainly comes from animal research. Yet, animal models of emotion are not directly comparable to human emotion. The challenge that our lab seeks to address is to translate established animal models of emotion to humans, by creating and investigating behavioural cross-species test beds. We are particularly interested in a computational formulation of aversive learning (fear conditioning), anxiety, and other defensive behaviours. To this end, we use structural and functional MRI, MEG, peripheral physiology, behavioural experiments, and computational modelling.

Keywords: Emotions, comparative neuroscience, computational modelling, fear conditioning, anxiety

Topics: Neural Basis of Behavior, Cognitive Neuroscience, Computation and Modeling

Publications: pubmed

Website: http://bachlab.org

 

   
Daniel Brandeis

 

Prof. Dr. Daniel Brandeis 
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Zurich, University of Zurich
brandeis@kjpd.uzh.ch

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

Website: http://www.kjpd.uzh.ch/multimod/bm.html

 

   
Silvia Brem

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Dr. sc. nat. Silvia Brem
University Clinic for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (UCCAP), University of Zürich
silvia.brem@kjpd.uzh.ch

Research Focus: Current research interests are the use of multimodal imaging techniques (EEG, MRI) to examine i) typical and atypical reading development (developmental dyslexia), ii) prediction and intervention in dyslexia and iii) dysfunctional brain networks in child psychiatric populations such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and juvenile obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

Keywords: EEG, MRI, simultaneous EEG-fMRI, reading, developmental dyslexia, ADHD, OCD

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience, Disorders of the Nervous System

Publications: pubmed

Website: http://www.kjpd.uzh.ch

 

   
Peter Brugger

 

Prof. Dr. phil. Peter Brugger 
Neuropsychology Unit, Department of Neurology, University Hospital Zurich 
peter.brugger@usz.ch

Research Focus: One focus is on space representation in healthy individuals and patients with hemispatial neglect. The “space” we are interested in is not confined to physical space, but comprises imagined locations, number space and the spatial representation of time. A very special, private part of space is our body. We are interested in the relations between corporeal awareness and the construction and experience of the self. This experience can change after brain damage, but can also drastically deviate from the norm in a minority of apparently healthy individuals. Cognitive dysfunction in a demyelinating disorder, multiple sclerosis, represents a further focus of interest. Here we are specifically interested in the relative contributions of white matter and gray matter lesions to cognitive performance, specifically executive functions. Generally, our strengths are in behavioral methods; structural and functional neuroimaging may complement the behavioral approach.

Keywords: Processing of space and time, body and self, structural correlates of cognitive dysfunction

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience, Disorders of the Nervous System

Publications: www.zora.uzh.ch

   
christen

 

PD Dr. sc. ETH Markus Christen

Institute of Biomedical Ethics and History of Medicine & UZH Digital Society Initiative, University of Zurich

christen@ethik.uzh.ch
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
Projectshttp://www.research-projects.uzh.ch/a1026.htm

Publicationshttps://www.encyclog.com/forschung/person/publikationen

Website:  http://www.ibme.uzh.ch/de/ethik/forschung/Neuro-Ethics-Technology-(NET)-Research-Group.html 

 

   
Moritz Daum

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Prof. Dr. phil. Moritz M. Daum
Department of Psychology, Developmental Psychology: Infancy and Childhood, University of Zurich
daum@psychologie.uzh.ch

Research Focus: The overarching aim of the Research Group “Developmental Psychology” is to address the roots of infants’ and young children’s perception and understanding of their social world. The understanding of others as social agents is one of the most fundamental skills in our everyday social life. It is crucial for any engagement in cooperative and communicative activities. In our research, we are particularly interested in the mechanisms that form the bedrock of infants’ action perception, the interrelation of infants’ early action perception comprehension to the control of their own actions, the selective implementation of observed actions in one’s own actions.

Current projects focus on the (neuro-)cognitive processes underlying infants’ and young children’s action understanding, the interrelation of action understanding and action performance across the whole lifespan, the interrelation of language and action in development, and the development of the self.

Keywords: developmental psychology, infancy, life span, cognitive development, action perception language, imitation, eye tracking, EEG

Topics: Development and Regeneration, Neural Basis of Behavior, Cognitive Neuroscience

Publications: pubmed

Website: http://www.psychologie.uzh.ch/fachrichtungen/devpsy/personen

Lab: http://www.kleineweltentdecker.ch

 

   
ettlin

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

Center of Dental Medicine, University of Zurich
dominik.ettlin@zzm.uzh.ch

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

Website: http://www.zzm.uzh.ch/en/research/staff/ettlin-dominik.html

 

   
Sascha Frühholz

 

Prof. Dr. Sascha Frühholz
Department of Psychology, Division of Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, University of Zurich
sascha.fruehholz@psychologie.uzh.ch
Research Focus: Research focus in auditory and in affective neuroscience. Research projects on the cognitive and neural mechanisms of face and voice perception, on voice production, and on emotional processing. Research methods include fMRI, EEG, TMS, NIRS, machine learning, and behavioral/psychoacoustic experiments.

Keywords: Emotion, voice, vocal production, auditory system, limbic system

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Publications: pubmed

Website: http://www.psychology.uzh.ch/chairs/kaneuro.html

 

   
Todd Hare

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Prof. Dr. Todd Hare
Laboratory for Social and Neural Systems Research, Department of Economics, University of Zürich
todd.hare@uzh.ch

Research Focus: Decision making is central to human behavior and the ability to make good choices is necessary for personal health and optimal social functioning. Our goal is to understand the neural mechanisms of decision making in healthy, typical populations as well as how these processes become dysfunctional in specific behavioral disorders and pathophysiologies.

We examine the neural networks that mediate decision making for various reward types (primary, monetary, social), and have shown that while key areas of the decision network are recruited across choice domains, the regions with which they interact differ between decision contexts. Using a combination of behavioral, neuroimaging, brain stimulation, and computational modeling techniques, current projects focus on the impact of factors such as stress, social feedback, and attention on both self-control and normative decision making.

Keywords: decision making, self-control, strategic choice

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Publications: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/faculty/hare/publications.html

Website: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/faculty/hare.html

 

   
Katharina Henke

 

Prof. Dr. Katharina Henke
Department of Psychology and Center for Cognition, Learning and Memory, University of Bern
henke@psy.unibe.ch

Research Focus: Our neuroimaging findings suggest that the human hippocampal formation specializes in the rapid establishment of new associations between items in memory. Patient studies revealed that the hippocampal formation is necessary for the rapid encoding and retrieval of new associations even when encoding and retrieval were carried out unconsciously. We found a role of sleep in the consolidation of consciously and unconsciously acquired memories. Even de-novo memory formation during daytime naps appears feasible.  We currently test for a potential advantage of unconscious over conscious information processing in situations where complex information needs to be simultaneously processed and integrated. This research informs models of information processing and models of memory systems at both the neural and mental level.

Keywords: Human memory, unconscious information processing, hippocampus, sleep, neuroimaging

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Publications: https://www.boris.unibe.ch

Website: http://www.apn.psy.unibe.ch/content/team/henke/index_ger.html

   
Lutz Jäncke

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Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Lutz Jäncke
Department of Psychology, Division of Neuropsychology, University of Zurich
l.jaencke@psychologie.uzh.ch
 

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience
Website: http://www.psychology.uzh.ch/chairs/neuropsy.html

 

   
Klaver Peter

 

Prof. Dr. Peter Klaver
School of Psychology, University of Surrey, and Center for MR Research, University Children's Hospital Zurich
p.klaver@surrey.ac.uk, peter.klaver@uzh.ch

Research Focus: How do humans acquire knowledge about the world? Answering this question is central for the understanding and promoting of a child‘s achievement at school and further academic and work career. Within this field of research my focus lies on the study of the neural underpinnings of learning, memory and higher visual cognition. Specifically, I aim at unraveling how two dominant neural systems, the ventral and dorsal visual system support learning and memory. I pursue the hypothesis that both visual systems independently support learning and memory. The ventral system largely supports episodic memory formation and is primarily influenced by bottom-up processing, the dorsal system supports working memory processing and episodic memory retrieval and is under influence of top-down mechanisms. I am highly interested in how these systems work together, how they develop and what happens when parts of the systems are disrupted due to developmental disorders. Here, the hippocampus is an interesting target brain region for investigation, as it is vulnerable for early developmental disorders, it has a unique developmental trajectory and interacts with both dorsal and ventral visual streams.

Keywords: learning, memory, higher visual cognition, cognitive development, neurodevelopmental disorders

Topics: cognitive neuroscience, development and regeneration, disorders of the nervous system

Projects:
- The impact of maternal iodine deficiency on human brain and cognitive development
- Common neural mechanisms of episodic memory and working memory in typical and atypical development
- Linking the major system markers for typical and atypical brain development: a multimodal imaging study

Publications: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/psychology/people/peter_klaver/#publications

Website: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/psychology/people/peter_klaver/

 

   
Spyros Kollias

 

Prof. Dr med. Spyros Kollias
Neuroradiology Clinic, University Hospital Zurich
spyros.kollias@usz.ch

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

 

   
Karin Kucian

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PD Dr. sc. nat. Karin Kucian, Junior Group Leader
Center for MR-Research, University Children's Hospital Zurich
karin.kucian@kispi.uzh.ch

Research Focus: Our research interests in neuroscience lie in developmental neuropsychology, in particular with emphasis on neuronal correlates of number processing and calculation in children and the effects of specific learning disorders, like developmental dyscalculia, or math anxiety on brain structure and function. Based on our own findings from behavioural and brain imaging studies (magnetic resonance imaging) and current knowledge about number processing and calculation we are also involved in the development and evaluation of special interventions for children with mathematical learning problems.

Keywords: number processing, dyscalculia, calculation, development, children, intervention, brain imaging, MRI

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Publications: pubmed

Website: https://www.kispi.uzh.ch/fzk/de/Seiten/default.aspx

   
Langer_Nicolas

 

Prof. Dr. Nicolas Langer
Methods of Plasticity Research, Department of Psychology, University of Zurich
n.langer@psychologie.uzh.ch

Research Focus: Our lab develops and obtains new neurophysiological and neuroimaging measures in the context of human brain and behavioral plasticity. Specifically, we investigate the potential for plasticity, mechanisms for stabilization and compensation across the lifespan. In particular, we investigate the relationship between brain plasticity and cognitive functioning, such as perceptual processing, learning, (working-) memory, decision-making and processing speed.
In this context of neuroplasticity research, we are designing and implementing novel multi-modal paradigms (e.g. combined EEG eye-tracking), extracting and associate them with state of the art neuroscientific methods, such as functional network models, machine learning, longitudinal analyses and computational modeling. These paradigms can also be used to decompose the critical component processes underlying performance of the behavioral tests that are used routinely in clinical diagnosis. This multi-level, multi-modal design allows us to study cognitive performance and perception at their desired level of analysis, and to elucidate variations in performance across the continuum from healthy to pathological functioning. To investigate those research aims and objectives, we are using a variety of psychological and neuroscientific methods, such as EEG, eye-tracking, structural MRI & DTI, psychophysiology)
Keywords: EEG, eye-tracking, cognitive modeling, machine-learning, cognition, multi-modal imaging, structural MRI, DTI, development, neurophenotyping, Research Domain Criteria (RDoC).

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience, Computation and Modeling, Neural Basis of Behavior, Development and Regeneration

Publications: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Nicolas+Langer 

https://scholar.google.ch/citations?user=MElLotMAAAAJ&hl=en

Website: http://www.psychologie.uzh.ch/de/fachrichtungen/plafor.html
 

   
Lenggenhager

 

Prof. Dr. Bigna Lenggenhager
Department of Psychology, University of Zurich
bigna.lenggenhager@gmail.com

Research Focus: Our group investigates multisensory and neural mechanisms underlying the sense of a bodily. A main focus is put on the investigation of how plastic the bodily self is both in health as well in disease. We investigates how the sense of a bodily self develops during the life span. Using behavioral, neural and psychophysiological measures we study the mutual interaction between the perception of one's own body and cognitive, motivational and emotional and self-related processes.

Keywords: self consciousness, multisensory integration, plasticity, bodily illusions, interoception, virtual reality

Topics: Neural Basis of Behavior, Cognitive Neuroscience, Sensory Systems

Webpage: http://psychologie.uzh.ch/kogneuro

Publications:pubmed

 

   
Mike Martin

 

Prof. Dr. Mike Martin
Dept of Psychology, Gerontopsychology, University of Zurich
m.martin@psychologie.uzh.ch

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Website: http://www.psychologie.uzh.ch/fachrichtungen/geronto_en.html

 

   
Pfaltz_Monique

 

Prof. Dr. phil. Monique Pfaltz

Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University Hospital Zurich

monique.pfaltz@usz.ch

Research Focus: Our research group specialises in peripheral physiology associated with emotion processing and the respective data collection and analysis methods. We are using ambulatory approaches as well as experimental laboratory research, including eye tracking analysis of video recordings to better understand emotion recognition, facial mimicry, emotion regulation, emotional reactivity and their biological foundations in clinical populations (e.g. borderline personality disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder) as well as the general population. A special focus lies on childhood and adult trauma related symptoms and their impact on emotional and social functioning.

Keywords: peripheral physiology, emotion processing, posttraumatic stress, ambulatory assessment strategies

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience; Neural Basis of Behavior; Development and Regeneration

Publications: pubmed
 
   
Polania Rafael

 

Prof. Dr. Rafael Polania
Decision Neuroscience Lab, Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich

rafael.polonia@hest.ethz.ch

Research Focus: Humans do not react to the environment in a reflexive manner, but can freely choose which action to perform in response to a given situation. The neural processes that enable such flexible decision making are fundamental components of human cognition and have attracted a lot of interest from researchers in many scientific disciplines such as neuroscience, psychology, economics, and medicine.

The research agenda at the Decision Neuroscience Lab bridges these multiple disciplines across theoretical and empirical domains to establish important links between the computational, psychological and neural processes controlling human decision making, by providing both correlative and causal evidence that well-defined neural signals are indeed driving both computationally defined cognitive processes and the resulting behavior. This research thus has the potential to unite conceptually separate approaches to the study of distinct types of human behavior and thereby contribute information that is crucial for the diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric and neurological disorders involving decision-making pathologies (e.g. ADHD, obesity, addiction).

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience, Computation and Modeling, Neural Basis of Behavior

Keywords: decision-making, EEG, fMRI, non-invasive brain stimulation, reward, perception, economics.

Publications: google-scholar
 

   
Boris Quednow

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Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Boris B. Quednow
Experimental and Clinical Pharmacopsychology, Dept of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, Psychiatric Hospital, University of Zurich
quednow@bli.uzh.ch

Research Focus: Pharmacopsychology – today a subdiscipline of neuropsychology and biological psychology – was founded by the famous German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin (1856-1926) and aims to explore the neurochemical basis of human cognition, emotion, and behavior. Standing in Kraepelins tradition, our main research goal is a better understanding of the neuropsychopharmacological mechanisms of cognitive and emotional brain functions and their impact specifically on social behavior in humans. We are currently investigating the neuroplasticity and behavioral neurotoxicity induced by chronic use of legal and illegal drugs, such as nicotine, methylphenidate, cocaine, MDMA (“ecstasy”), GHB, opioids, and cannabis. Furthermore, we study the molecular and neuronal basis of impaired early information processing (e.g., pre-attentional gating) up to complex cognitive functions (e.g., empathy) in psychiatric diseases such as addiction, schizophrenia, and depression.

Keywords: Neuroenhancement, drug dependence, psychosis, affective disorders, endophenotype, genetics, sensorimotor gating, prepulse inhibition, neuropsychology, social cognition, decision-making, neuroeconomics, molecular imaging, PET

Topic: Cognitive Neuroscience

Projects: http://www.research-projects.uzh.ch/a767.htm

Publications: pubmed

Website: http://www.dppp.uzh.ch/en/research/psychiatric/substance.html

 

   
Michael Rufer

 

Prof. Dr. Michael Rufer
Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, University Hospital of Psychiatry, Zurich
michael.rufer@puk.zh.ch

Research Focus: One important focus is the emotion regulation and dysregulation in psychosomatic and psychiatric disorders. This includes the evaluation of different psychological constructs, such as alexithymia and dissociation, the development of assessment methods, and the investigation of neural correlates of emotion regulation. Further main research areas are multidisciplinary approaches on different aspects of the relationships between psychology and medicine, psychotherapeutic processes and outcomes, including neurobiological aspects, and technology-based psychological interventions (Internet-based and mobile interventions) for different disorders, such as anxiety and obsessive compulsive spectrum disorders.

Keywords: Emotion regulation, alexithymia, dissociation, psychotherapy, psychosomatics, neurobiology, internet-based therapy

Topics: Cognitive Neuroscience, Disorders of the Nervous System, Neural Basis of Behavior
Projects: http://www.research-projects.uzh.ch/a481.htm

Publications: pubmed

Website: https://www.pukzh.ch/

 

   
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