Healthy ageing, neurodegeneration and neuropsychiatry


One of the main research areas of the clinic is healthy, neurodegeneration and neuropsychiatry. A broad methodological spectrum spanning from preclinical approaches to clinical studies in order to investigate mechanisms of the healthy ageing process. Based on these findings, we develop preventive, disease-modifying and therapeutic interventions. Our interdisciplinary research network of biologists, chemists, psychologists, physicists and computer scientists enables us to implement process from conception to clinical use.
We are working in close cooperation with the CHA (Centre for Healthy Ageing Mainz) to identify and investigate biomarkers of ageing in neuronal tissues. Intervention strategies are tested on animal models such as e.g. C. elegans. Using neuroimaging techniques, we identify regions of the human brain that are especially vulnerable within the context of ageing. Within the scope of patient-centered care research, we develop strategies to improve early diagnostics of neuro- and gerontopsychiatric diseases as well as treat patients and close family members in a patient-, resource- and guideline-oriented way, as well as develop innovative care concepts for prevention and therapy.
The results of the investigations are evaluated by means of a translational cycle with the ultimate goal to enable an ageing process that is as cognitively healthy and free of ailments as possible.


The following working groups deal with the topic of ageing in various projects:

Working groups in the Department for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy

Key publications

    • Oettl, L., Scheller, M., Filosa, C., Wieland S, Haag F., Loeb C., Durstewitz D., Shusterman R., Russo E., Kelsch W. (2020). Phasic dopamine reinforces distinct striatal stimulus encoding in the olfactory tubercle driving dopaminergic reward prediction. Nat Commun 11, 3460 (2020).
    • Hewel C., Kaiser J., Wierczeiko A., Linke J., Reinhardt C., Endres K., Gerber S. (2019). Common miRNA Patterns of Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease and Their Putative Impact on Commensal Gut Microbiota. Front Neurosci. 13:113.
    • Brandscheid C., Schuck F., Reinhardt S., Schäfer K.H., Pietrzik C.U., Grimm M. Hartmann T., Schwiertz A., Endres K. (2017). Altered Gut Microbiome Composition and Tryptic Activity of the 5xFAD Alzheimer's Mouse Model. J Alzheimers Dis. 56:775-788.
    • Oettl LL, Ravi N., Schneider M., Scheller M.F., Schneider P., Mitre M., Da Silva Gouveia M., Froemke R.C., Chao M.V. Young W.S., Meyer-Lindenberg A., grinevich V., Shustermann R., Kelsch W. (2016). Oxytocin Enhances Social Recognition by Modulating Cortical Control of Early Olfactory Processing. Neuron 90:609-21.


  • German Research Foundation (DFG)
  • Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)