Principle Investigator

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 head of the research group since 2013 and part of the transregional Collaborative Research Center “Fear, Anxiety, Anxiety Disorders and is funded by an Emmy Nöther Independent Junior Research group (“Fear Profiles“) by the German Research Foundation since 2019.  

Major research interests include affective neuroscience – in particular fear/anxiety and stress as well as individual differences. A second major interest is to promote the robustness and replicability in the field (meta-research). 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″.

Tina is also deputy spokesperson of the Special Interest Group on ‘Open and Reproducible Science’ (IGOR) in the German Psychological Association (Section for Biological Psychology) and 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).


Post-doctoral researcher


Rachel Sjouwerman holds a Master in Cognitive Neuroscience from Utrecht University (Netherlands) and joined our team in late 2014 and defendet her PhD thesis (“Framing Fear”) in July 2019. We are lucky that Rachel now has her own grant that allows her to continue her work on individual differences in defensive responding and experimental boundary conditions of return of fear in the group.



Mana Ehlers (previously a PhD student in Vancouver with Rebecca Todd) joined us as a post-doc in July 2019 and is working on the project FEAR PROFILES. 


PhD students

Maren Klingelhöfer-Jens has performed her Master thesis work in our group and is since August 2018 a PhD student in our group. Maren’s project is part of the transregional CRC “Fear, Anxiety, Anxiety Disorders” and focuses on the impact of life adversity on fear and anxiety. Maren employs a prospective, longitudinal approach in a large imaging sample.


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.


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.


Study Physician

Dr. Jonas Rauh supports our group since 2019 as a part-time (50%) study physician. He is responsible for medical screening of participants prior to MRI studies, drawing blood samples and supporting studies involving drug administration.


Bachelor students

Charlotte Dermandt is a student of Cognitive Science in Osnabrück and has been working with Alex on an approach avoidance paradigm in Virtual Reality in 2020. We are glad that she is now working on ther BA thesis with us.



Vincent  Keyaniyan joined the lab as a research intern on April 1st – in the middle of the COVID-19 shut-down for an internship until August 2020. He is a Bachelor student of Psychology at the  Medical School Hamburg and recently finished his Bachelor thesis project in the group on within-subject stimulus discrimination over time together with Maren and Tina. We are happy that he continues to work with us on a voluntary base on this project even after finishing his thesis.

Marie Springub is a student of Psychology at the University of Hamburg. She currently conducts her BA-thesis project in Marens project.



Vivian Mohr is a Master student of Psychology at Hamburg University. She supported our team as a research intern from November 2020 until March 2020. During her internship she worked with Alina on a project investigating freezing-like behavior (body sway) during  a threat imminence task and a systematic literature review using different R packages. We are glad that she is now a Master student in the lab continuing her work on freezing-like behavior and decision-making under threat.

Student Assistants


Maren Schlereth is a Master Student of psychology at the University of Hamburg and has supported our team as a research intern from February 2021 to May 2021. We are glad that she continues to support us as a student assistant. She mainly works with Alina on freezing-like behavior in the fear profiles project.


Linus Krause is a student of psychology and has been supporting our team since 01/2021. He is currently supporting Alex with an approach-avoidance task in virtual reality as well as Tina with an inventory of publicly available data in fear conditioning research.



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.



     Sabrina Ilius was a 6-month full time research intern and also did her Master thesis with us after her internship. She is now a PhD student with Nina Alexander at HafenCity University of Hamburg.

     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!

     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.

     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.

     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.

Dr. Manuel Kuhn (PhD student 2013-2017, post-doc in the lab 2017-2019). Since July 2019, Manuel is a post-doc with Diego Pizzagalli.

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)


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)