Empowering the Future of Neuroscience

Empowering the Future of Neurosceince

Grunwald Kadow Group

We combine neuroscience and physiology to understand how brains and bodies communicate on the cellular and molecular level to enable organisms to thrive in their respective environments.

Empfindungen und Entscheidungen basieren auf sensorischen EPerceptions and decisions depend on sensory impressions, but also on past experiences and the present internal state of an animal. Behavior is therefore very adaptive and flexible. For instance, a hungry animal perceives the smell and taste of food as much more positive than a fed animal. At the same time, it is willing to take a high risk and invest time and energy in order to find food. Which signals and neural networks allow the communication between brain and body? And how do they modulate behavior and decision-making in the best interest of the organism?

We aim at answering these questions at three levels: (1) behavior, (2) neural networks, and (3) genes. To this end, we are using genetic models such as Drosophila melanogaster in combination with modern techniques including high resolution behavioral analysis, optogenetics, and in vivo multiphoton microscopy. In particular, we focus on how the brain translates chemosensory information, i.e. odors and tastes, into state- and experience-dependent perceptions and ultimately into behavior.

What are we offering?

Behavioral neuroscience, circuit mapping, Drosophila melanogaster, mouse, 2 photon imaging, wholebrain imaging, neurogenetics, behavioral screens, Chemosensation and decision-making.

What are we interested in for collaboration?

Deep behavioral analysis, modelling, big data analysis, spatial transcriptomics and dopamine.

Discover our homepage here.

To learn more about Prof. Dr. Ilona Grunwald Kadow, follow her on ORCID, Twitter, or LinkedIn.


  • Detailed behavioral analysis and tracking
  • In vivo imaging (Lightfield whole brain imaging, Multiphoton imaging)
  • Electrophysiology
  • Genetics (Drosophila, mouse)
  • Neural circuit mapping

5 selected publications

  1. Kobler J, Rodriguez FJ, Petcu I, Grunwald Kadow IC (2020). Immune receptor signaling and the mushroom body mediate post-ingestion pathogen avoidance. Current Biology, online Oct 1. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2020.09.022.
  2. K.P. Siju, Stih V, Aimon S, Gjorgjieva J, Portugues P, Grunwald Kadow IC (2020). Valence and state-dependent population coding in dopaminergic neurons in the fly mushroom body. Current Biology 30(11):2104-2115. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2020.04.037
  3. Sayin S, De Backer JF, Wosniack ME, Lewis L, Siju KP, Frisch LM, Schlegel P, Edmondson-Stait A, Sharifi N, Fisher CB, Calle-Schuler S, Lauritzen S, Bock D, Costa M, Jefferis GSXE, Gjorgjieva J, Grunwald Kadow IC (2019). A neural circuit arbitrates between perseverance and withdrawal in hungry Drosophila. Neuron 104, 544–558,online Aug 27 2019. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2019.07.028
  4. Lewis L, Siju KP, Aso Y, Friedrich AB, Bulteel AJB, Rubin GM, Grunwald Kadow IC (2015). A higher brain circuit for immediate integration of conflicting sensory information in Drosophila. Current Biology PMID: 26299514, doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.07.015
  5. Cayirlioglu, P*, Grunwald Kadow, IC*, Zhan, X, Okamura, K, Gunning, D, Lai, EC, and Zipursky, SL (2008) Hybrid Neurons in a microRNA mutant are putative evolutionary intermediates in insect CO2 sensory systems. Science 319, 1256-1260. * equal contribution doi: 10.1126/science.1149483.