Associated Institute - Ernst Strüngmann Institute (ESI) for Neuroscience in Cooperation with Max-Planck-Society

Associated Institute - Ernst Strüngmann Institute (ESI) for Neuroscience in Cooperation with Max-Planck-Society

As a private research institute, the Ernst Strüngmann Institute (ESI) for Neuroscience performes medical scientific projects mainly in the field of cognitive brain research. The Institute’s scientists research the principles behind the communication and interaction between the billions of cells in the brain, how the particular dynamics of the brain arise in the process, and how these interactions ultimately shape human behaviour.

The legally independent Ernst Strüngmann Institute for Neuroscience cooperates closely with the Max Planck Society: the selection of its scientists and evaluation of its research studies are carried out in accordance with the Max Planck Society’s criteria for excellence, and its Directors are Scientific Members of the MPS. The Ernst Strüngmann Institute for Neuroscience is financed by the Ernst Strüngmann Foundation which was established by the brothers Andreas and Thomas Strüngmann in memory of their father Ernst Strüngmann in 2008.


Deutschordenstr. 46
60528 Frankfurt am Main
Phone: +49 69 96769-501
Fax: +49 69 96769-555

PhD opportunities

This institute has no International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS).

There is always the possibility to do a PhD. Please contact the directors or research group leaders at the Institute.

Cell number determines structure of neural maps
Frankfurt researchers find a simple explanation for the typical patterns of nerve cells inside neural maps more
<p><strong>The brain communicates on several channels</strong></p>
The human brain uses several frequency bands for the flow of information between lower and higher areas more
No articles in MaxPlanckResearch found.

Neuronal patterns and the formation of memory

2018 Vinck, Martin
Medicine Neurosciences
Spontaneous activity patterns are strongly implicated in memory consolidation processes. Neuronal activity patterns and sensory responses depend strongly on behavioral state. Active behavioral states are associated with enhanced gain, the presence of fast cortical dynamics, and a reduction in spontaneous activity. Inactive behavioral states like sleep are associated with enhanced spontaneous activity, reduced response gain, and slow cortical dynamics that are temporally highly structured. These effects depend strongly on the activity of specific GABAergic interneurons. more

How neuronal rhythms influence effective connectivity in the brain

2017 Wunderle, Thomas
Medicine Neurosciences

The processing of sensory information is hard work for our brain: Millions of neurons have to work together to process the flood of information about our environment. In the past years it became obvious that the rhythmic synchronization between cortical areas plays an important role in the directed routing of information in the brain. New experiments reveal that neuronal rhythms can modulate the gain of incoming stimuli. This mechanism gives an explanation of how we can consciously perceive an isolated object by focusing our attention on it.


The cerebral cortex, a high dimensional, dynamic system

2016 Singer, Wolf; Lazar, Andreea
Medicine Neurosciences
Theoretical considerations and experimental findings suggest that the cerebral cortex uses a principle for the encoding and processing of information that is still little explored. It is based on the high dimensionality of dynamic states of recurrent networks. more

Computational Cajal – modelling the formation of neural circuits

2015 Cuntz, Hermann
Medicine Neurosciences
In the 19th century, Santiago Ramón y Cajal carefully immortalised neural circuits in beautiful drawings. He saw that they are composed of individual nerve cells connected to each other via their widespread input and output arborisations. He also postulated that neural circuits are arranged so that the least possible amount of material and space is used and signals are conducted as fast as possible. Using these principles we created computer models that accurately reproduce the shape of real neurons. Using these principles we now plan to model the shape of entire brain areas. more

Seeing without consciousness – what and why does a blindsighted see?

2014 Schmiedt, J. T.; Schmid, M. C.
Medicine Neurosciences
Patients with injury of the primary visual cortex are consciously blind, but can still be able to respond to visual stimuli without being able to explain why. The underlying neuronal mechanisms of this “blindsight” are not well understood, in particular the involvement of the cortex. A new animal model and modern electrophysiological methods have enabled us to gain deeper insights into a phenomenon that questions the common meaning of seeing. more

Finding the needle in the haystack: How our brain selects information

2013 Wunderle, Thomas
Medicine Neurosciences

Our brain is constantly bombarded with sensory information. However, only a fraction of this information may be behaviorally relevant at a given moment in time. How such selection processes are realized in the brain is in the focus of current research. A possible mechanism for the dynamic routing of information is the selective, rhythmic synchronization between populations of neurons. Experimental results support this hypothesis and expand our knowledge about the processing of sensory information in the brain.

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