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Universitätsklinikum Essen
Unsere Forschung

Experimentelle Neurologie


Upcoming events

++ Journal-Club: 10.08.2020 / 5.30-6.30 pm; Dr. Andreas Thieme and Dr. Giorgi Batsikadze will present and we will discuss: „The study protocol of the 3T fMRT experiments using tACS during fear conditioning”.   via ZOOM, please contact Dagmar Timmann for details ++ 

The program of the Journal-Club in the winter term will be announced in September.

++ Neurophysiologisches Seminar: 02.07.2020 / 5.15-6.30 pm; Dr. David Benninger (Neurologische Klinik, Universitätshospital Lausanne (CHUV Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois), Lausanne, CH): „Non-invasive cerebellar stimulation in movement disorders.” via ZOOM, please contact Dagmar Timmann for details ++ 

The program of the Neurophysiologische Seminar in the winter term will be announced in September.


Lana Inoue's and Giorgi Batsikdaze's paper on Interaction of fear conditioning with eyeblink conditioning supports the sensory gating hypothesis of the amygdala in men has been accepted for publication in the journal eNeuro.

Dr. med. Linda Beyer has successfully defended her medical thesis on June 3rd, 2020.

Seyed Ali Nicksirat won a Junior Clinician Scientist scholarship which allows him to work in the lab for three months full-time.

Katharina M. Steiner's paper on Extinction of Cognitive Associations Is Preserved in Patients With Cerebellar Disease has been accepted for publication in the journal Neurobiology of Learning and Memory.

Dr. med. Simba Oostdam has successfully defended his medical thesis on January 30th, 2020.

Dr. med. Johanna Reinold has successfully defended her medical thesis on December 20th, 2019.

Jan Lipp's and Rossitza Draganova's paper on Prefrontal but not cerebellar tDCS attenuates renewal of extinguished conditioned eyeblink responses has been accepted for publication in the journal Neurobiology of Learning and Memory.

Katharina M. Steiner as been awarded a prize for best poster at the 92. Annual Meeting of the German Neurology Society, 26-29 September 2019.

Jens Claassen's paper on Cerebellum is more concerned about visceral than somatic pain has been accepted for publication in the journal JNNP.

Thomas Ernst's paper on The cerebellum is involved in processing of predictions and prediction errors in a fear conditioning paradigm has been accepted for publication in the journal eLIFE.

Dr. med. Otilia Negruta has successfully defended her medical thesis on July 3rd, 2019.

Dr. med. Sarah Müller has successfully defended her medical thesis on May 31th, 2019.

Lana Inoue has been awarded the Masao Ito Award for Best Poster for the presentation of her poster „Can cerebellar-dependent motor responses modulate extinction of conditioned fear?“ at the 10. International Meeting of the Society for Research on the Cerebellum and Ataxias (SRCA), 16-17 May 2019, in Sheffield, UK.

Dr. med. Anne Enders has successfully defended her medical thesis on April 30th, 2019.

Giorgi Batsikadze's paper on the Effects of cerebellar transcranial direct current stimulation on cerebellar-brain inhibition in humans: a systematic evaluation has been accepted for publication in the journal Brain Stimulation.

Michael Küper's paper on Cerebellar transcranial direct current stimulation modulates the fMRI signal in the cerebellar nuclei in a simple motor task has been accepted for publication in the journal Brain Stimulation.

Ariels Mamlin's paper on No effects of cerebellar transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on force field and visuomotor reach adaptation in young and healthy subjects has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Neurophysiology.

Research group and research interests

Dagmar Timmann, MD, Associate Professor

Research Interests

The motor control group is interested in the physiology of the human cerebellum. A major interest is the involvement of the human cerebellum in different forms of motor learning. Questions addressed are whether the cerebellum is involved in particular forms of learning, which cerebellar areas are involved and what the mechanisms of cerebellar involvement are. Another interest is the role of the cerebellum in cognition.
A main focus is the study of patients with defined cerebellar pathology. Localization of focal cerebellar lesions and extent of atrophy in cerebellar degeneration are defined based on high-resolution structural MRI. Lesion data is correlated with findings in neurophysiological and psychological experiments. In addition, functional MRI studies are performed using 3T and 7T MR scanners. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is used to modulate cerebellar function in healthy subjects and patients with cerebellar disease.

Curriculum vitae

Academic education

1988 MD, University of Tübingen, Germany
1990 Dr. med., University of Tübingen
1996 Specialist in Neurology
1998 Habilitation with the venia legendi for Neurology, University of Essen, Germany

Academic positions

1989-1993 Intern/resident Department of Neurology, University Clinic Essen, Germany
1993-1994 Postdoc at the Arizona State University (Dr. G. Stelmach), Tempe, and Barrow Neurological Institute (Dr. J. Bloedel), Phoenix, Arizona, USA
1994-1995 Postdoc at the R.S. Dow Neurological Sciences Institute (Dr. F. Horak), Portland, Oregon, USA
1995-1997 Resident Department of Neurology, University Clinic Essen
1998-1999 Postdoc at the University of Western Ontario, Department of Physiology (Dr. J. Hore), London, Ontario, Canada
since 2000 Associate Professor (C3) of Experimental Neurology, Department of Neurology, University Clinic Essen
2006 Visiting Scientist at the University of Western Ontario, Department of Physiology (Dr. J. Hore), London, Ontario, Canada
2011 and 2017 Visiting Scientist at the Human Sensorimotor Control Laboratory (Dr. J. Konczak), University of Minnesota, USA

Further activities

since 1997 Medical advisory board, German Heredo-Ataxia Society
since 2000 Head of the Ataxia Clinic, Department of Neurology, University Clinic Essen
2006-2017 Deputy chairman of the Human research ethics committee, University Clinic Essen
2007-2012 Treasurer, Society for Research on Cerebellum
since 2016 Associated Principle Investigator Erwin L. Hahn Institute of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
since 2017 Co-speaker SFB 1280 (Extinction learning; speaker O. Güntürkün, RUB)

Members of the Group (Phone, Email)

Student help: Katja Grünewald, Michael Klein, Raquel van der Veen, Firosa Zargar, Philip Zeidan

Medical doctoral students: Nino Adeishvili, Linda Farsijani (nee Beyer, ELAN scholarship), Lana Inoue (ELAN scholarship), Dominik Jäschke (ELAN scholarship), Liane John (ELAN scholarship), Michael Klein, Björn Koch, Jan Lipp, Ariels Mamlins (ELAN scholarship), Manuel Rauscher, Christine Stadtler

External group members: Dae-In Chang, MD, Marcus Gerwig, MD, Michael Küper, MD

Phone numbers

+49 201 723 3815/ 2594 (Lab, ground floor)
+49 201 723 2865 (Lab, basement)
+49 201 723 3769 (Lab, ground floor)
+49 201 723 3816 (Lab, basement)

+49 201 723 5969 (Lab, Fax)


The group is funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG), Mercator Research Center Ruhr, Else-Kröner Promotionskolleg ELAN, the German Heredoataxia Society and the Bernd Fink Foundation.

Important publications (last five years)

Tran L, Huening BM, Kaiser O, Schweiger B, Sirin S, Quick HH, Felderhoff-Mueser U, Timmann D. (2017) Cerebellar-dependent associative learning is impaired in very preterm born children and young adults. Sci Rep. 7:18028.

Weissbach A, Werner E, Bally JF, Tunc S, Löns S, Timmann D, Zeuner KE, Tadic V, Brüggemann N, Lang A, Klein C, Münchau A, Bäumer T. (2017) Alcohol improves cerebellar learning deficit in myoclonus-dystonia: A clinical and electrophysiological investigation. Ann Neurol. 82:543-553.

Hulst T, John L, Küper M, van der Geest JN, Göricke SL, Donchin O, Timmann D. (2017) Cerebellar patients do not benefit from cerebellar or M1 transcranial direct current stimulation during force-field reaching adaptation. J Neurophysiol. 118:732-48

Stefanescu MR, Dohnalek M, Maderwald S, Thürling M, Minnerop M, Beck A, Schlamann M, Diedrichsen J, Ladd ME, Timmann D. (2015) Structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging abnormalities of cerebellar cortex and nuclei in spinocerebellar ataxia type 3, spinocerebellar ataxia type 6, and Friedreich’s ataxia. Brain 138:1182-97

Thürling M, Kahl F, Maderwald S, Stefanescu RM, Schlamann M, Boele H-J, De Zeeuw CI, Diedrichsen J, Ladd ME, Koekkoek SKE, Timmann D. (2015) Cerebellar cortex and cerebellar nuclei are concomitantly activated during eyeblink conditioning: a 7T fMRI study in humans. J Neurosci. 35:1228-39

Christensen A, Giese M, Sultan F, Müller O, Göricke S, Ilg W, Timmann D. (2014) An intact action-perception coupling depends on the integrity of the cerebellum. J Neurosci. 34:6707-6716

Thieme A, Thürling M, Galuba J, Burciu RG, Göricke S, Beck A, Aurich V,  Wondzinski E, Siebler M, Gerwig M, Bracha V, Timmann D. (2013) Storage of a naturally acquired conditioned response is impaired in patients with cerebellar degeneration. Brain 136:2063-2076

Burciu RG, Fritsche N, Granert O, Schmitz L, Spönemann N, Konczak J, Theysohn N, Gerwig M, van Eimeren T, Timmann D. (2013) Brain changes associated with postural training in patients with cerebellar degeneration: a voxel-based morphometry study. J Neurosci. 33:4594-4604

Taig E, Küper M, Theysohn N, Timmann D, Donchin. (2012) Deficient use of visual information in estimating hand position in cerebellar patients. J Neurosci. 32:16274-16284

Donchin O, Rabe K, Diedrichsen J, Lally N, Schoch B, Gizewski ER, Timmann D. (2012) Cerebellar regions involved in adaptation to force field and visuomotor perturbation. J. Neurophysiol. 107:134-147

Diedrichsen J, Maderwald S, Küper M, Thürling M, Rabe K, Gizewski ER, Ladd ME, Timmann D. (2011) Imaging the deep cerebellar nuclei: A probabilistic atlas and normalization procedure. Neuroimage 54: 1786-1794