Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences GSN-LMU

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Carsten Wotjak

PD Dr. Carsten Wotjak

Former member MCN, GSN associate faculty


Research Group Leader Neuronal Plasticity


Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry
Stress Neurobiology & Neurogenetics
Kraepelinstr. 2-10
D-80804 München

Phone: +49 (0)89 / 30622-652
Fax: +49 (0)89 / 30622-640


Further Information

Research focus:

• Animal models of fear and anxiety disorders

• Biological basis of stress-related psychopathology

• Role of the endocannabinoid system in fear and anxiety

• Cognitive performance in mouse models of psychiatric / neurological disorders

• Cognitive enhancement / extinction and erasure of traumatic memories

Keywords: Learning, Memory, Fear, Anxiety

GSN students

Selected publications:

Reichel JM, Bedenk BT, Gassen NC, Hafner K, Bura SA, Almeida-Correa S, Genewsky A, Dedic N, Giesert F, Agarwal A, Nave K-A, Rein T, Czisch M, Deussing JM, Wotjak CT (2016) Beware of your Cre-ation: lacZ expression impairs neuronal integrity and hippocampus-dependent memory. Hippocampus, in press.

Casarotto PC, Terzian AL, Aguiar DC, Zangrossi H, Guimaraes FS, Wotjak CT, Moreira FA (2012) Opposing roles for cannabinoid receptor type-1 (CB1) and transient receptor potential vanilloid type-1 channel (TRPV1) on the modulation of panic-like responses in rats. Neuropsychopharmacology 37(2):478-86.

Thoeringer CK, Henes K, Eder M, Dahlhoff M, Wurst W, Holsboer F, Deussing JM, Moosmang S, Wotjak CT (2012). Consolidation of remote fear memories involves corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH) receptor type 1-mediated enhancement of AMPA receptor GluR1 signaling in the dentate gyrus. Neuropsychopharmacology, 37 (3): 787-796.

Kleinknecht KR, Bedenk BT, Kaltwasser SF, Gruenecker B, Yen YC, Czisch M, Wotjak CT (2012) Hippocampus-dependent place learning enables spatial flexibility in mice. Front Behav Neuroscience 6:87 (doi:10.3389/fnbeh.2012.00087)

Murgatroyd C, Patchev AV, Wu Y, Micale V, Bockmühl Y, Fischer D, Holsboer F, Wotjak CT, Almeida OFX, Spengler D (2009). Dynamic DNA methylation programs persistent adverse effects of early-life stress. Nature Neurosci 12: 1559-1566. Plendl W, Wotjak CT (2010). Dissociation of within-session and between-session extinction of conditioned fear. J Neurosci 30: 4990-4998.

Siegmund A, Wotjak CT (2007). A mouse model of posttraumatic stress disorder that distinguishes between conditioned and sensitized fear. J Psychiat Res 41: 848-860.

Marsicano G*, Wotjak CT*, Azad SC, Bisognos T, Rammes G, Cascio MG, Hermann H, Tang J, Hofmann C, Zieglgänsberger W, Di Marzo V, Lutz B (2002). The endogenous cannabinoid system controls extinction of aversive memories. Nature 418: 530 – 534. (* the two authors contributed equally to the study)