International Research Training Group 2150

The Neuroscience of Modulating
Aggression and Impulsivity in Psychopathology

1st  S P R I N G   S C H O O L

April 26 – April 29, 2017

D ear students and colleagues,
Welcome to our new annual Spring School of the International Research Training Group (IRTG): The Neuroscience of Modulating Aggression and Impulsivity in Psycho-pathology. Aggression and impulsivity represent problematic behavior across a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders. Both have extensive socioeconomic consequences. Hence, understanding the mechanistic basis of those problems is of great relevance not only from a clinical but also from a societal perspective. With the research and educational program of the IRTG, we aim to shed light on the neural circuits of impulsivity and aggression, as well as the modulation of these networks in patients by means of advanced neurostimulation techniques.

With the planned PhD projects and the expected results, we will advance and expand existing network models and will test innovative therapeutic strategies. As an educational program, the major aim of the IRTG is to support and thereby facilitate and improve doctoral training via a structured and coherent curriculum. The interdisciplinary nature of the IRTG and its strong international orientation will hopefully give participants an excellent qualification to enter various career paths after leaving the IRTG. Hence, we aim to optimally prepare young clinical and basic neuroscientists to tackle these new developments and challenges and further advance our understanding on the neurobiological bases of pathological aggression and impulsivity.

The annual Spring School, held alternately in Philadelphia or Aachen/Jülich, will initiate and stimulate intense cooperation between PhD students and the American and German supervisors. Here, the mutual scientific exchange between the partner universities takes place as well as the thesis committee meetings. German and US students give scientific presentations on their projects and get valuable feedback by their supervisors as a very important part of their scientific training.

The scientific program has been organized by PhD students from all participating institutions and will feature eight sessions, whereby each session covers a topic in the scope of the IRTG. Keynote lectures by experts in different fields of neuroscience will further benefit the program.
Many thanks go to the DFG and the participating institutions: the RWTH Aachen Uni-versity, Research Center Jülich, and the University of Pennsylvania. Particularly, we would like to thank all speakers for sharing their research and the organizing team for a lot of support.
We are very happy to welcome you here in Philadelphia and are looking forward to exciting and stimulating four days initiating this new IRTG 2150!

Best wishes,

Ruben C. Gur and Ute Habel

Program Overview

 Wednesday, April 26

08.45 am – 09.15 am Morning coffee
09.15 am – 09.45 am Welcome and opening: Ute Habel and Ruben Gur
09.45 am – 11.00 am Session 1: Development and Brain Networks
11.00 am – 11.45 am Keynote lecture: Danielle Bassett
11.45 am – 12.15 pm Coffee break
12.15 pm – 01.15 pm Session 2: Aggression and Antisocial behavior
01.15 pm – 01.30 pm Photo session
01.30 pm – 02.30 pm Lunch break
02.30 pm – 04.00 pm Student thesis committee meetings
04.00 pm – 05.30 pm Student thesis committee meetings
6.00 pm Welcome reception and dinner

Thursday, April 27

09.00 am – 10.15 am Session 3: Brain Disease Models
10.15 am – 10.45 am Coffee break
10.45 am – 12.00 pm Session 4: Brain Stimulation and Feedback
12.00 pm – 12.45 pm Keynote lecture: Michael L. Platt
12.45 pm – 01.45 pm Lunch break
01.45 pm – 03.15 pm Student thesis committee meetings
03.30 pm – 06.00 pm City tour
6.00 pm Students’ evening

Friday, April 28

08.45 am – 09.45 am Supervisors meeting
09.45 am – 10.45 am Session 5: Sensory Systems
10.45 am – 11.15 am Coffee break
11.15 am – 12.30 pm Session 6: Methods
12.30 pm – 01.30 pm Session 7: Cells and Genes
01.30 pm – 02.30 pm Lunch break
02.30 pm – 03.15 pm Keynote lecture: Kathrin Reetz
03.15 pm – 04.45 pm Student thesis committee meetings
04.45 pm – 05.45 pm IRTG board meeting
6.00 pm Farewell dinner

Saturday, April 29

09.00 am – 10.15 am Session 8: Emotion and Cognition
10.15 am – 10.30 am Coffee break
10.30 am – 11.15 am Keynote lecture: Marc Spehr
11.15 am – 11.45 am Synopsis and final remarks


All sessions will take place in Claudia Cohen Hall (formerly Logan Hall)

Welcome reception: Biomedical Research Building

Farewell dinner: Han Dynasty University City