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Prof. Dr. Cornelius Schwarz

Organization: Werner Reichardt Center for Integrative Neuroscience


Otfried-Müller-Str. 25
72076 Tübingen

Phone number: ++49/(0)7071/2980462

Department: CIN Systems Neurophysiology

Position: Head of Research Group

Area: CIN Staff

Scientific topic: Systems Neurophysiology, Behavioral Neurophysiology

Field of Research

Our main interest is how the activity of single neurons and small neuron networks relate to behavior. We work on questions how top-down signals modulate sensory processing and affect perception (active perception). Candidate top-down signals are those related to movements that serve sensation and presumably improve perception. In future studies we will study if and how executive signals generated in the prefrontal cortex act on the sensorimotor loop to improve perception and/or prepare movements.


Our model system is whisker-based tactile perception in rodents. These animals use delibaretely tuned whisker movements to scan their tactile environment. Currently we apply multi neuron, multi-electrode extracellular electrophysiology in awake behaviorally trained rodents.


active perception; behavioural neuroscience; cognitive neuroscience; microstimulation; neuro-physiology; neuro-prosthetics; somatosensory system

  1. Hentschke H, Haiss F, Schwarz C (2006). Central signals rapidly switch tactile processing in rat barrel cortex during whisker movements. Cereb Cortex. 16(8):1142-56.
  2. Stüttgen MC, Rüter J, Schwarz C (2006). Two psychophysical channels of whisker deflection in rats align with two neuronal classes of primary afferents. J Neurosci. 26(30):7933-41.
  3. Stüttgen MC, Schwarz C (2008). Psychophysical and neurometric detection performance under stimulus uncertainty. Nat Neurosci. 11(9):1091-9.