Grit Hein

Principal Investigator

Dr Grit Hein is a professor of Translational Social Neuroscience at the University of Würzburg, Germany. After studying Psychology in Berlin and New York, she conducted her PhD at the Max-Planck-Institute of Cognition and Brain Sciences in Leipzig. Prior to joining the University of Würzburg in 2017, Dr Hein completed Postdoctoral Research Fellowships at UC Berkeley and the University of Zurich and held a position as a lecturer at the University of Bern.

Marthe Gründahl

PhD Student

Marthe Gründahl is a 2nd year doctoral researcher. She studied Psychology at the University of Würzburg, with Erasmus stays in Italy and France. Her research focuses on the application of smartphone and sensor-based Ecological Momentary Assessment in the investigation of social interactions and their relation to anxiety. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, she is investigating how the implementation of social distancing measures effects individuals’ psychological functioning and everyday life.

Vassil Iotzov

PhD Student

Vassil Iotzov is a third year PhD student in the Translational Social Neuroscience Lab. He studied Psychology at the Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main. In his master thesis he investigated cognitive biases in decision making and possible correlations with different facets of optimism. In his current research he uses behavioral experiments and neuroimaging to study the neural modulation of social motivation and decision making.

Natascha Christina Leipold

MD Student

I studied psychology at the University of Würzburg with emphasis on clinical and social psychology. The topic of my bachelor thesis was the interaction between construal level, capacity and psychopathy in moral decision making.
Since 2015 I am a medical student at the University of Würzburg. My doctoral research in the translational social neuroscience lab focuses on altruistic punishment in the public goods game.

Leonie Retzlaff

MD Student

Leonie Retzlaff is a medical doctoral student absolving the research program at the Graduate School of Life Sciences and joined the lab team in December 2018. Her question of research aims to investigate wether social factors influence the level of tension and anxiety acquired in a pain-inducing paradigm. Research areas that interest her include the development and treatment of anxiety disorders, as well as stress-induced psychosomatic disorders and the psychosocial effects of chonic pain.

Anne Saulin

PhD Student

Anne Saulin studied psychology and physics at the University of Tübingen and at Yale University. After working as a researcher at the University of Bern, she joined the Translational Social Neuroscience Lab as a PhD student. Her work focuses on neural and behavioural investigations of the interplay of prosocial motives. In her PhD project she uses functional magnetic resonance imaging and drift-diffusion modelling to understand the neuro-computational bases of the interplay between the empathy motive and the reciprocity motive and its impact on prosocial decision processes.

Rui Su

PhD Student

Rui Su is a PhD student in the translational social neuroscience lab at the University of Würzburg. She majors in social cognitive neuroscience and her doctoral research focuses on prosocial behaviour and reinforcement learning. In her doctoral project, she uses computational models and a combination of neuroimaging techniques to investigate how our brains process social decision making.


Dorothée Bruch - current position: practical clinical year