Sensorimotor systems

Department of Neurology
Institute of Psychology II 

Group Members

Christoph Helmchen, Andreas Sprenger (Group leaders)
Peter Trillenberg (Neurology consultant)
Björn Machner(Medical Doctor)
Janina von der Gablentz (Medical Doctor)
Inga Könemund(PostDoc)
Jan-Birger Kirchhoff (PostDoc)

Research Interests

Eye movements are an excellent tool for studying sensorimotor systems in health and disease. This is related to highly accurate and easily applicable recording systems. Using electrophysiological and brain imaging techniques we are interested in studying basic sensorimotor mechanisms contributing to the control of gaze, visual exploration, postural balance and spatial orientation as well as cognitive processes (i.e. attention) which modulate their performance. Specifically, we study

  • short and long term memory of oculomotor (saccadic) learning
  • disorders of the vestibular systems and central mechanisms of compensation
  • spatial memory and orientation
  • neglect syndromes
  • predictive mechanisms of action planning
  • body ownership
  • attention and action-related pain processing


  • Rebekka Lencer, University of Münster
  • Wolfgang Heide, City Hospital Celle
  • Erich Schneider, Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU) Munich Hospital


  1. N. M. Jandl, A. Sprenger, J. F. Wojak, M. Göttlich, T. F. Münte, U. M. Krämer, C. Helmchen. Dissociable cerebellar activity during spatial navigation and visual memory in bilateral vestibular failure. Neuroscience 2015; 305: 257-67
  2. Sprenger A, Weber FD, Machner B, Talamo S, Scheffelmeier S, Bethke J, Helmchen C, Gais S, Kimmig H, Born J . Deprivation and Recovery of Sleep in Succession Enhances Reflexive Motor Behavior. Cereb Cortex 2015; 25 (11): 4610-18
  3. Lencer R, Sprenger A, Reilly JL, McDowell JE, Rubin LH, Badner JA, Keshavan MS, Pearlson GD, Tamminga CA, Gershon ES, Clementz BA, Sweeney JA. Pursuit eye movements as an intermediate phenotype across psychotic disorders: Evidence from the B-SNIP study. Schizophr Res. 2015; 169(1-3):326-33
  4. Göttlich M, Jandl NM, Wojak JF, Sprenger A, von der Gablentz J, Münte TF, Krämer UM, Helmchen C. Altered resting-state functional connectivity in patients with chronic bilateral vestibular failure. Neuroimage Clin. 2014; 4:488-99
  5. Machner B, Könemund I, Sprenger A, von der Gablentz J, Helmchen C. Randomized controlled trial on hemifield eye patching and optokinetic stimulation in acute spatial neglect. Stroke. 2014; 45(8):2465-8