Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour
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Theme 2: Perception, Action and Control

Brain Stimulation and Motivational Control

The research group is concerned with studying the neurobiological and functional underpinnings of human motivation and motivational control in health and disease.
Non-invasive brain stimulation (transcranial magnetic stimulation and direct/alternating current stimulation) takes a central role in this group for its ability to study the relation between brain and function in a direct manner, and for its therapeutic potential. Combined with quantitative electroencephalography, steroid hormones, electromyography, and behavioral test batteries we investigate the neurological correlates of plasticity, motivation, and the regulation of motivational tendencies in healthy volunteers and in patients with mental disorders, like major depressive disorder, conduct disorder and psychopathy.
In addition to understanding the workings of the brain in relation to motivation and control, we aspire to exploit this knowledge to develop noninvasive brain stimulation protocols for the treatment of mental disorders.

Key grants and prizes

Innovational Research Grant (#451-04-070) from the Netherlands Organization for
Scientific Research (NWO) (VENI) (2004): € 200.000,-

Innovational Research Grant (#016-085-339) from the Netherlands Organization for
Scientific Research (NWO) (VIDI) (2007): € 600.000,-

Key publications

Schutter, D.J.L.G. (2014). Syncing your brain: Electric currents to enhance
cognition. Trends in Cognitive Sciences,

Schutter, D.J.L.G., Harmon-Jones E. (2013). The corpus callosum: A commissural
road to anger and aggression. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 37,

Hofman, D., Terburg, D., van Wielink, L.N., Schutter, D.J.L.G. (2013).
Coalescence of dominance motivation and responses to facial anger in
resting-state and event-related electrophysiology. Neuroimage, 79, 138-144

Schutter, D.J.L.G., van Honk, J. (2010). An endocrine perspective on the role of
steroid hormones in the antidepressant treatment efficacy of transcranial
magnetic stimulation. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 35, 171-178

Schutter, D.J.L.G., Hortensius, R. (2011). Brain oscillations and frequency
dependent modulation of cortical excitability. Brain Stimulation, 4, 97-103

Schutter, D.J.L.G. (2009). Antidepressant efficacy of high-frequency
transcranial magnetic stimulation over the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex
in double-blind sham controlled designs: A meta-analysis. Psychological
Medicine, 39, 65-75

Schutter, D.J.L.G., de Weijer, A.D., Meuwese J.D.I., Morgan, B., & van Honk,
J. (2008). Interrelations between motivational stance, cortical excitability,
and the frontal electroencephalogram asymmetry of emotion: A transcranial
magnetic stimulation study. Human Brain Mapping, 29, 574-580

Name: Dennis Schutter
Telephone: 024-3611027
Visiting address: Donders Centre for Cognition
Montessorilaan 3
6525 HR Nijmegen
The Netherlands
Postal address:

Donders Centre for Cognition
Postbus 9104
6500 HE Nijmegen
The Netherlands

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Research Theme 2:
Perception, Action and Decision-making

Research Group
Brain Stimulation and Motivational Control

Principal Investigator
Dr. D.J.L.G Schutter

Milou van Helvert
Miles Wischnewski
Syanah Wynn

Marlies van Bochhove