I am a cognitive neuroscientist with a background in functional neuroimaging of perception and emotion in healthy populations and patients with psychiatric illness. Before joining the Psychology Division at KI in 2014, I worked at the Monell Chemical Senses Center and the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA, where I began to study cortical integration of smell and taste during food perception. I am currentlly affiliated with the Psychology Division at the Clinical Neuroscience Department, where I conduct experimental work on odor-taste integration, as well as the Aging Research Center, where I investigate the role of olfactory decline on health in the elderly using longitudinal population data.
2006 Master of Science in Neuro-Cognitive Psychology, LMU Munich, Germany
2010 PhD in Clinical Neuroscience, RWTH Aachen University
2010-2014 Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Pennsylvania/Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, PA, USA
The identification of food objects, and decision whether or not to eat them at a particular point in time, is crucial for our survival, and depends heavily on the ability to remember associations between sensory information from different modalities. My current research studies the neural networks which permit the identification of smells in the environment, their integration with visual and gustatory cues, and the assessment of their behavioral relevance. In particular, I use structural and functional MRI as well as psychophysical and psychophysiological recordings to investigate the role of these networks for the maintenance of human health, as related to, for example, disease avoidance and appetite regulation.