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Research Focus


  • Application of innovative neuroscience technologies to achieve a deep understanding of higher cognitive functions in animals and humans at the level of single neural cell function and their organization into networks.
  • Neural mechanisms of cognition and behavior
  • Transfer these strategies to neuropsychiatric disorders in animal models and patients to achieve an understanding of these common diseases and their symptoms at the elementary level, and to generate new strategies for diagnosis and therapy
  • Use mathematical methods and modeling to describe complexity at the neural and behavioral levels, and provide theoretical support for relationships between these levels.


Avatar Beck

Prof. Dr. Heinz Beck

Institute for Epileptology and Cognitive Sciences

+49 228 6885-270

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At a Glance

Welcome to the Bonn Center of Neuroscience (BCN), the central network for neuroscience at the University of Bonn. At the BCN, more than 300 scientists are passionate about understanding the brain, the most complex and fascinating organ of mammals. The brain enables the organism to perceive and remember its environment, make decisions based on these perceptions, and translate them into complex behaviors. BCN scientists are pursuing intellectually ambitious approaches to elucidate the underlying mechanisms at the level of single cells to networks that underlie complex behavior.

Furthermore, we are convinced that the study of the brain is not only a fascinating challenge for modern neuroscience, but also of fundamental importance for the understanding and treatment of psychiatric and neurological diseases. Such diseases account for a large part of the personal, social and economic burden of disease in Europe.

The BCN unites neuroscience research in Bonn in an inter-institutional network. It pools resources and expertise to coordinate, support and promote neuroscience research and teaching at the University of Bonn and its affiliated institutes and organizational units. With foci in clinical neuroscience, electrophysiology, imaging and genetics, our work encompasses highly relevant research areas and cutting-edge technologies, embedded in an excellent scientific environment.

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Current Events

Seminars, events and news can be found on the pages of the Bonn Center of Neuroscience. 


Selected collaborative projects sorted alphabetically

BMBF: ATTENTION 23"ADHD Therapy by means of Transcranial Eltectric Neurostimulation"
Subproject: Prof. Alexandra Philipsen
BMBF: DeepHumanVision34 "Study of visual coding in the human brain using multilayer neural networks"
Subproject: Prof. Florian Mormann
BMBF: IDSN45 "Integrated data semantics for neurodegenerative research"
Subproject: Prof. Thomas Klockgether
BMBF: NG4LeuKo56 "Study of neuron-glia interactions in leukodystrophies using human iPSZ-based models: Implication for therapy"
Subproject: Prof. Oliver Brüstle
BMBF: PREADAPT67 "Identification of personalized inflammatory profiles of aging and their implications for dementia development"
Subproject: Prof. Michael Heneka
Subproject: Prof. Oliver Brüstle
DFG: FOR 210789 "Neurobiology of Affective Disorders: A Translational Perspective on Brain Structure and Function"
Speaker: Prof. Tilo Kircher (Marburg), subproject: Prof. Axel Krug
DFG: FOR 2625910 "Mechanisms of Lysosomal Homeostasis"
Speaker: Prof. Thomas Braulke (Hamburg), subproject: Prof. Volkmar Gieselmann, Dr. Dominic Winter
DFG: FOR 27151011 „Epileptogenesis of genetic epilepsies“ Tübingen-Bonn
Speaker: Prof. Holger Lerche (Tübingen), subprojects: Prof. Heinz Beck, Prof. Albert Becker
DFG: FOR 27951112 "Synapses under stress: Early events induced by metabolic failure at glutamatergic synapses"
Speaker: Prof. Christine R. Rose (Düsseldorf), subprojects: Prof. Christian Henneberger, Prof. Gabor Petzold
DFG: FOR 29531213 "Sialic Acid as Regulator in Development and Immunity"
Speaker: PD Dr. Martina Mühlenhoff (Hanover), subproject: Prof. Harald Neumann
DFG: SFB 8701314 "Formation and function of neuronal circuits in sensory systems"
Speaker: Prof. Benedikt Grothe (Munich), subproject: Prof. Tobias Rose
DFG: SFB 10801415 "Molecular and cellular mechanisms of neural homeostasis"
Speaker: Prof. Amparo Acker-Palmer (Frankfurt), subproject: Prof. Tatjana Tchumatchenko
DFG: SFB 10891516 „Synaptic Micronetworks in Health and Disease”
Speaker: Prof. Heinz Beck, co-speaker: Prof. Susanne Schoch
DFG: SPP 17571617 „Functional Specialisations of Neuroglia as Critical Determinants of Brain Activity“
Coordinator: Prof. Frank Kirchhoff (Saarland University), extensive participation of Bonn (Prof. Dirk Dietrich, Prof. Christian Henneberger, Prof. Susanne Schoch, Dr. Martin K. Schwarz, PD Gerald Seifert, Prof. Christian Steinhäuser)
DFG: SPP 20411718 "Computational Connectomics"
Speaker: Prof. Jochen Triesch (Frankfurt), subproject: Prof. Heinz Beck, Dr. Karl Schwarz
DFG: SPP 21271819 "Gene and cell based therapies to counteract neuroretinal degeneration"
Speaker: Prof. Knut tieger (Gießen), subproject: Prof. Volker Busskamp
DFG: SPP 21771920 "Radiomics: Next Generation of Biomedical Imaging"
Speaker: Prof. Fabian Bamberg (Freiburg), subproject: Prof. Ulrich Herrlinger
DFG: SPP 22052021 "Evolutionary Optimisation of Neuronal Processing"
Speaker: Prof. Fred Wolf (Göttingen), subproject: Prof. Florian Mormann
EU: EU-GliaPhD "Training, Research and Raising of Public Awareness in Cell Biology and Pathology of Neuroglia"
Coordinator: Saarland University; Bonn: Prof. Christian Steinhäuse, Prof. Christian Henneberger
EU: MACUSTAR "Intermediate AMD: development of novel clinical endpoints for clinical trials in patients with a regulatory and patient access intention"
Coordinator: Prof. Frank Holz, co-coordinator: Prof. Robert Finger

EU: PSY-PGX "A new intervention for implementation of pharmacogenetics in psychiatry"
Sub-project leader: Prof. Markus Nöthen, Co-PI: Prof. Alexandra Philipsen 

EU: NCS-Recontruct "Novel Strategies for Cell-based Neural Reconstruction"
Coordinator: Universita Degli Studi Di Genova, Italy; Bonn: Prof. Oliver Brüstle
EU: PHAGO "New therapeutic strategies for Alzheimer’s Disease"
Speaker: Prof. Harald Neumann
EU: RHUMBO "modelling and pRedicting Human decision-making Using Measures of subconscious Brain processes through mixed reality interfaces and biOmetric signals"
Coordinator: Universitat Politecnica de Valencia, Spain; Bonn: Diana Shih
EU: Stem Cell Factory III „Standardized and Integrated Processes for Personalized Stem Cell-Based Drug Prediction Using Reprogrammed Blood Cells“,
Coordination: LIFE & BRAIN Cellomics; Bonn: Prof. Oliver Brüstle
Hertie Network of Clinical Neuroscience
Speaker: Prof. Anja Schneider, Prof. Heinz Beck
Innovative Training Networks (ITN), EUGliaPhD
Coordinator: Prof. Frank Kirchhoff (Saarland University), Prof. Christian Henneberger, Prof. Christian Steinhäuser 

The Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology of Behavior – caesar is mainly focused on neuroscience research. Caesar is closely linked to the Neuroscientific focus through co-appointments with the Medical Faculty, close cooperation in collaborative projects (SFB 1089) and joint graduate schools (BIGS Neuroscience, IMPRS „Brain and Behavior“).

J. Kerr has already been appointed to the Medical Faculty as W3 Professor of "Behavioral Neuroscience" based on the Jülich model, and an appointment of K. Briggman is planned.

German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE)
The foundation of the DZNE in 2009 decisively strengthened translational research in Bonn. The close collaboration between working groups of the Neurosciences Research Center and the DZNE was further intensified by the occupation of the state-of-the-art DZNE building in 2016 in close proximity to the Neurocenter. The collaboration in clinical research is particularly close.

Several clinicians of the Neurocenter have an affiliation in the DZNE at the same time. Since the foundation of the DZNE, several neuroscience professorships based on the Jülich model have been established together with the DZNE. The DZNE operates several technological platforms to which researchers of the Medical Faculty Bonn have access.

For a listing of all research groups involved in the Neurosciences research focus, please see here.

  • Frank Bradke: Award of the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize in 2016
  • Marcel Oberlaender: ERC Starting Grant 2015
  • Jan Gründemann: ERC Starting Grant 2018
  • Tatjana Tchumatchenko: ERC Starting Grant 2020, Heinz Maier-Leibnitz-Prize 2016
  • Martin Fuhrmann: ERC Consolidator Grant 2019
  • Sandra Blaess: Heisenberg Stipend of the DFG 2016, converted to Heisenberg Professorship in 2017
  • Florian Mormann: Volkswagen Foundation Lichtenberg-Professorship 2013
  • Heinz Beck: Heisenberg Stipend of the DFG 2011, converted to Professorship

Organization & Promotion of Young Talent

Organizational Structure

Bonn Center of Neuroscience (BCN) 23          
The Bonn Center of Neuroscience (BCN) links all university research groups in Bonn with neuroscientific relevance in an interdisciplinary and inter-institutional network. The BCN supports interdisciplinary research, the establishment and further development of new technologies, the coordination and acquisition of third-party funding, and training programs at all career levels. The exchange with international scientists and research institutions is actively promoted.

Center for Economics and Neuroscience (CENs)24
The Center for Economics and Neuroscience (CEN), founded jointly with the Faculty of Law and Political Science and the Faculty of Philosophy, combines the neurosciences and behavioral sciences with the goal of understanding human behavior in an economically relevant context.

Education Structure

Master of Neurosciences2626
Speaker: Prof. Christian Steinhäuser
Bonn International Graduate School (BIGS) Neuroscience2727
Speaker: Prof. Sandra Blaess
International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) Brain and Behavior2828
The first transatlantic graduate school between the Max Planck Society and two universities (Florida Atlantic University and the University of Bonn, incl. Medical Faculty)
Speaker: Prof. Kevin Briggman

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