Welcome to the O’BRAIN Lab

Welcome to the O’BRAIN Lab

The O’BRAIN Lab is a group of researchers inves­ti­gat­ing the inter­play between obe­si­ty and the brain.
Over­weight and obe­si­ty rates have risen steadi­ly in recent decades. Although many of us share sim­i­lar envi­ron­ments, only a few peo­ple become obese. How come? In our search for the cause, we are con­front­ed with a com­plex inter­play of many fac­tors: In addi­tion to the envi­ron­ment, behav­iour, brain func­tion, and genet­ic influ­ences deter­mine the deci­sions we make and thus ulti­mate­ly also our body weight.


We try to answer fun­da­men­tal ques­tions about obe­si­ty: How does obe­si­ty devel­op? Why is it so hard to resist tempt­ing food? Does our brain deter­mine what and how much we eat? How does our nutri­tion shape our brain? Do changes with­in the brain make it so dif­fi­cult for us to break bad eat­ing habits? Last but not least: How can we help to improve eat­ing habits?


Our team is cur­rent­ly based in two places: Leipzig (Ger­many) and Helsin­ki (Fin­land). We bring togeth­er researchers from var­i­ous dis­ci­plines such as neu­ro­bi­ol­o­gy, psy­chol­o­gy, cog­ni­tive sci­ence, math­e­mat­ics, and med­i­cine.

Volunteer 🇩🇪

Wir suchen für eine aktuelle Studie:

gesunde Frauen (18–42 Jahre, hor­monell ver­hü­tend)

Es find­en wieder Tes­tun­gen statt. Es wurde ein umfan­gre­ich­er Kat­a­log von Hygien­e­maß­nah­men entwick­elt, um sowohl die Teil­nehmerIn­nen als auch das Per­son­al während der Exper­i­mente zu schützen. Wir suchen nach Per­so­n­en, die an unseren Stu­di­en teil­nehmen. Sie kön­nen unsere Forschung unter­stützen, indem Sie sich in unserem Proban­den­pool anmelden.

Recent News

I like the smell of that

We are proud to present a new paper in our series on the rela­tion­ship of smell (per­cep­tion) and obe­si­ty. Maria Poes­sel and col­leagues explore how meta­bol­ic health sta­tus, in par­tic­u­lar insulin resis­tance, may play a key role in the altered per­cep­tion of smell across a large sam­ple of peo­ple with…

Congratulations Dr. Meemken

On 23rd of July, we had the plea­sure of cel­e­brat­ing with Marie Meemken who suc­cess­ful­ly defend­ed her PhD the­sis on implic­it and explic­it appet­i­tive out­come learn­ing in obe­si­ty. We at the O’BRAIN Lab are very proud to see anoth­er female sci­en­tist emerge from our midst! Well done, Marie!

Testing resumes in Leipzig

After months of lock­down and social dis­tanc­ing the team in Leipzig is back at the MPI and test­ing. An exten­sive cat­aloque of hygiene mea­sures has been devel­oped to pro­tect both par­tic­i­pants and staff dur­ing exper­i­ments. Whilst not all meth­ods can be used yet, the O’BRAIN Lab has already test­ed a…