Behavior and Cognition

Oliver Gruber

Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Centre for Translational Research in Systems Neuroscience and Psychiatry
University Medical Center


Research Interests


  • Translational Neuroimaging: Identification of neurofunctional endophenotypes of schizophrenic and affective disorders; Development of neuroimaging biomarkers for differential diagnosis and optimization of treatment strategies
  • Genomic and Epigenomic Neuroimaging: Neurofunctional endophenotype-based genetic and epigenetic association studies in schizophrenic and affective disorders
  • Systems Neuroscience and Clinical Neuroimaging: Affective, Cognitive, and Social Neuroscience, Pathomechanisms of schizophrenic and affective disorders in dynamically interacting key neural systems



Education and Employment

2007 -Professor of Systems Neuroscience and Psychiatry, Deputy Chairman and Assistant Medical Director, Head of the Centre for Translational Research in Systems Neuroscience and Clinical Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Georg August University Göttingen, Germany
2006Habilitation, Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Saarland University, Homburg, Germany
2004 - 2007Junior Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience in Psychiatry, Specialist Registrar, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Saarland University, Homburg, Germany
2004 - 2006Acting Director, Dept. of Medical and Clinical Psychology, Saarland University, Homburg, Germany
2003 - 2004Group Leader and Head of Neuroimaging Lab, Dept. of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Saarland University, Homburg, Germany
2001 - 2003Assistant Doctor and Postdoctoral Fellow, Dept. of Psychiatry III, University of Ulm, Germany
2001 - 2005Research Associate, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig, Germany
1999Dr. med., Medicine, Psychiatry, J. W. Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany
1998 - 2001Assistant Doctor and Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute of Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig, Day-care Clinic for Cognitive Neurology, University of Leipzig, Germany
1997 - 1998Assistant Doctor and Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Dept. of Neurology, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, and Institute of Medicine at Research Center Jülich, Germany
1995 - 1996Resident, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Friedrich Wilhelm University, Bonn, Germany
1995State examination, Medicine (M. D.), J. W. Goethe University Frankfurt and J. Liebig University Giessen, Germany
1988 - 1994University studies of Medicine, Psychology, Philosophy and Biological Anthropology, J. W. Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany



Selected honours and awards

2008Essex Pharma Research Award
2008 Research Award, German Society of Biological Psychiatry
2008Poster Award, Three-Countries-Symposium for Biological Psychiatry
2007Travel Award, Organization for Human Brain Mapping (senior author)
2006Best Poster Award, International Society for Bipolar Disorders
2006Travel Award, Organization for Human Brain Mapping (senior author)
2005WFSBP Poster Award (World Congress of Biological Psychiatry)
2005Travel Award, Organization for Human Brain Mapping (senior author)


Selected publications

Diekhof, E.K. & Gruber, O. (2010) When desire collides with reason: functional interactions between anteroventral prefrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens underlie the human ability to resist impulsive desires. Journal of Neuroscience, 30 (4), 1488-1493.

Gruber, O., Tost, H., Henseler, I., Schmael, C., Scherk, H., Ende, G., Ruf, M., Falkai, P., & Rietschel, M. (2010) Pathological amygdala activation during working memory performance: evidence for a pathophysiological trait marker in bipolar affective disorder. Human Brain Mapping, 31:115-125.

Pajonk, F.G., Wobrock, T., Gruber, O., Scherk, H., Berner, D., Kaizl, I., Kierer, A., Müller, S., Oest, M., Meyer, T., Backens, M., Schneider-Axmann, T., Thornton, A.E., Honer, W.G. & Falkai, P. (2010) Hippocampal plasticity in response to exercise in schizophrenia. Archives of General Psychiatry, 67(2), 133-143.

Gruber, O. & von Cramon, D. Y. (2003) The functional neuroanatomy of human working memory revisited – evidence from 3T-fMRI studies using classical domain-specific interference tasks. NeuroImage, 19:797-809.

Gruber, O., Indefrey, P., Steinmetz, H. & Kleinschmidt, A. (2001) Dissociating neural correlates of cognitive components in mental calculation. Cerebral Cortex, 11:350-359.