Prof. Dr. Tina Lonsdorf

Dr. Tina Lonsdorf holds a Diploma in Psychology from the University of Giessen (Germany) and a PhD in Clinical Neuroscience from Karolinska Institutet (Stockholm, Sweden). She is a professor of Biological Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience at University of Bielefeld and head of the Emmy Nöther Independent Junior Research group (“Fear Profiles“) located at her previous institution (University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf, Institute for Systems Neuroscience).  Since 2022 she holds a shared seat (with Gordon Feld) in the steering committe of the German Reproducibility Network (GRN) and since 2023, she is the Division Chair of the Division “Biological Psychology and Neuropsychology” of the German Psychological Society (DGPs).

Her research combines topics of Biological Psychology, Affective and Cognitive Neuroscience as well as Differential Psychology with a clinical-translational focus. Major research interests include defensive responding under threat and stress, the impact of childhood maltreatment and adverse life events on defensive and emotional responding as well as neuro-functional plasticity.

A second major interest is to promote the robustness and replicability in the field (meta-research) with a focus on overcoming measurement challenges in experimental Biological and Neuroscientific Psychology. Supporting the latter aim, Tina has been the spokesperson of the European Network for the “Interdisciplinary Study of Fear Learning, Extinction and the Return of Fear (EIFEL-ROF)” since 2015″ and is a founding member of the Special Interest Group on ‘Open and Reproducible Science’ (IGOR) in the German Psychological Association (Section for Biological Psychology). Between 2020 and 2023 she served as the deputy spokesperson of IGOR. Since 2020 she is part of the program committee of the DFG funded Priority Program META-REP (SSP 2317, A Meta-scientific Program to Analyse and Optimize Replicability in the Behavioral, Social and Cognitive Sciences) and a PI in the Research Training Group “Emotional Learning and Memory“. 


Bielefeld lab

Dr. Mana Ehlers


Dr. Mana Ehlers (previously a PhD student in Vancouver, Canada, with Rebecca Todd) joined us the lab (by then the located in Hamburg) as a post-doc in July 2019 and has been working on the project FEAR PROFILES.  She is also leading a project together with Tina to build up a homogenized, living and dynamic database of fear conditioning datasets (based on open data and our own data) that will allow for live meta-, mega-, and multiverse analyses. The project is funded by the Volkswagen Stiftung.

Since fall 2023, Mana is part of the Bielefeld part of the group as a post-doc.



Maria Bruntsch



 Maria Bruntsch joined the team in February 2023 to work as a PhD in the FEAR-REP project funded by the German Research Foundation where she is investigating replicability within the field of fear conditioning taking into account methodological, procedural and analytical heterogeneity.  

Maria holds a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy-Neuroscience-Cognition from the Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg and did her masters in Cognitive and Integrative System Neuroscience at the Philipps University in Marburg.

Since fall 2023, Maria is part of the Bielefeld part of the group but she is also a guest researcher at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (Institute for Systems Neuroscience).


Artur Czeszumski



Dr.  Artur Czeszumski joined the team in January to work as a Post-doc in the FEAR-BASE project funded by the Volkswagen Foundation. The project aims to build up a homogenized, living and dynamic database of fear conditioning datasets (based on open data and our own data) that will allow for live meta-, mega-, and multiverse analyses.  

Artur holds a bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science from Nicolaus Copernicus University of Torun (Poland) and a Master in Cognitive Science from Osnabrück University. He also holds a (joint) PhD in Cognitive Science and Clinical Psychology from Osnabrück University and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, respectively.



Anna-Lena Witte


Anna-Lena Witte will join the team on July 1st 2024! Welcome! j

coming soon



We are happy to announced that two new lab members will start their post-doctoral positions in September and October 2024. Stay tuned for more updates!





Cem-Sultan (called Dilber) Yildirim supports our team since 2023. She serves as the contact person for all questions and task related to administration.

Open positions


We have several open positions in our newly built lab at the university of Bielfeld (2 post-doc and 1 Phd Student position). Check out the page on open positions.

Hamburg lab

Maren Klingelhöfer-Jens


Dr. Maren Klingelhöfer-Jens has performed her Master thesis work in our group and ihas been a PhD student in our team as part of the transregional CRC “Fear, Anxiety, Anxiety Disorders”. Maren is now a post-doctoral researcher in the Hamburg team working on meta-science projects as well as on longitudinal projects forcusion on life adversity and childhood adversity.


Alina Koppold


Alina Koppold joined the team in April 2019 and works as a PhD student on the project FEAR PROFILES. She is working on measuring freezing like behavior in humans in collaboration with Karin Roelofs (Donders Institute).

Alina studied Psychology at the University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt and did her Master thesis project at the Charite in Berlin and is a trained systemic therapist. 


Alexandros Kastrinogiannis

Alexandros Kastrinogiannis will joined the team as a PhD student in May 2019 working on the project FEAR PROFILES. He is focusing on a costly approach-avoidance paradigm implemented in virtual reality.

Alex studied Cognitive Science in Osnabrück and did his BA thesis as a collaboration with the EmotionLab in Stockholm  before doing a master in Cognitive Neuroscience in Barcelona.


Julia Ruge

Julia Ruge started her PhD project in September 2022 in the newly founded Research Training Group ‘Emotional Learning and Memory’ at the University of Hamburg and the University Medical Center Hamburg. Julia holds a Master degree in Psychology from the Georg-August-University in Göttingen and has previuosly been working as reserach assistant in Breme in the BRISE project.



Alena Russmann


We are glad that Alena Russmann has joined the lab in October 2022 as a study psychologist and lab manager, mainly coordinating participant recruitment and data collection in our FEAR PROFILES study. She holds a BSc Neuroscience with Cognitive Science from the University of Sussex and a Research Master Cognitive Neuropsychology from the Vreije Universiteit Amsterdam. Alena Russmann joined the lab of Anja Riesel (University of Hamburg) in January 2024 as a PhD student but will support us a little bit until March 2024.

Master and Bachelor students


Cecilia Bracht is a Bachelor Student of Psychology at the University of Hamburg since 2020. She has supported our team since October 2022 and also wrote her bachelor thesis project in our group. She is now a Master student at FU Berlin but we are glad that she continues to support our team remotely.


Student Assistants

Charlotte Stacina

Charlotte Svacina is a Bachelor Student of Psychology at the Medical School Hamburg. She supports Fear Profiles as a student research assistant since January 2023.


Sara Lohmann supports FEAR PROFILES since February 2023. She is a Bachelor student of Psychology at the Medical School Hamburg.



Fenja Thyke is a Bachelor Student of Psychology at the Medical School Hamburg. She supports the Fear Profils project since May 2021.




Malin Ramm has been a BA student in the lab working on a thesis project on the impact of life adversity on brain morphological measures in 2020. We are glad she stayed in the lab as a student research assistant mainly working with Mana. Since 10/2021 she is a Master student of Psychology at the University of Lübeck but we were glad that she continued to support our team romotely with participant recuitment and our open database project. She is also worked on her Master thesis project in our group which she defended in 2023.



Kai Schüren was a master student at the University of Amsterdam and  supported our team from January 2022 until September 2022. His thesis project focuses on the neurobiological and neuroendocrine correlates of acute trauma exposure. The project is a collaboration with Dr. Sarah Biedermann (Section for Psychosocial Medicine at the UKE) as well as with the Emergency Room, the Section for Forensic Medicine as well as the police department. Kai is now a PhD student in Lars Schwabes group at the University of Hamburg in the DFG funded research training group “Emotional Learning and Memory.


Rachel Sjouwerman joined our team in late 2014 and defendet her PhD thesis (“Framing Fear”) in July 2019.We were lucky that Rachel continued her work on individual differences in defensive responding and experimental boundary conditions of return of fear in the group until she moved back to her mothercountry in 9/2021 and now works at the University of Maastricht (NL)  as post-doc with Johan Vlaeyen. She was our R plotting queen and we have all learned a lot from her.  Good luck with the new project and all the best!

     Karoline Rosenkranz has supported our work in the context of the CRC 58 (SFB TRR 58) on Fear, Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders between 2016 and 2020 as a study psychologist. She has tested 500 participants! Wow! Karoline is now a clinical psychologist.

     Mareike Clos has been a post-doc in the group. She has been continuing Maren’s work during her maternal leave and now works as a data scientist. Good luck with this new path.

     Johannes Fuß has been a study physician and has supported our work in the context of the CRC 58 (SFB TRR 58) on Fear, Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders between 2016 and 2019.

     Kevin Rozario has been a research assistant and supporting most of our experimental work between 2017 and 2019. He is now a PhD student at the Helmholz-Centre for Environmental Research in Leizpig! Good luck with your Phd!

     Hannes Per Carsten was a full time research intern in our group and also did his Master thesis project with us. He is now a PhD student in the lab of Prof. Anja Riesel, University of Hamburg. We are happy to see that he continues his work on defensive responding with a clinical-translational focus and stays in contact! Good luck!

Dr. Manuel Kuhn jointed the lab from the University of Vienna (Aus) as a PhD student (2013-2017) and we were lucky that he stayed in the laba as a post-doc (2017-2019) before he moved to work as a post-doc with Alex Shackman at the University of Maryland in July  2019. Manuel is now a post-doc at McLean/Harvard Mecial School with Diego Pizzagalli. Good luck in the US and with everything the future may bring. We are glad that we still collaborate with him because he miss him in the lab.

Dr. Robert Scharfenort (PhD student 2013-2016) now works as a clinical Psychologist.

Dr. Gaetan Mertens (Guest PhD student, 2013) visited the lab as a PhD student with Jan DeHouwer (University of Ghent). He is now an Assistant Professor at the University of Tillburg, Netherlands.

Dr. Sarah Biedermann (Study Physician, 2016)

Dirk Schümann (Study Psychologist, 2013-2015)

Laura Kürbitz (Study Psychologist, 2015-2016)



Master and Bachelor Students

Vivien Mohr

Marie Springub

Elodie Dammann

Hannes Per Carsten


Research interns and student assistants

Alex MacRae-Korobkov (DAAD rise student, 2017)

Max Schießl (research intern, 2018)

Maike Möller (research intern, 2015)

Moritz Held (reserach intern, student assistent, 2016-2017)

Nina Akmann (research intern, 2021)

Jana Hofacker (research intern, 2015)

Johanna Niehaus (student assistant, 2013-2017, bachelor student 2015)

Janne Nold (student assistant, 2016-2017, research intern 2020)

Habibia Schiller (student assistant, 2018-2019)

Stella Schmotz (student assistant, 2016-2017)

Philip Leja (student assistant, 2014-2015)

Sophia Ehrentraut (student assistant, 2020-2021)

Gina Rinoldi (student assistant, 2020-2021)

Sophie Caroni (2021-2022)

Samuel Sander (2022)

Carline Quattara (2022-2023)

Ann-Kathrin Knak (2022)