Prof. Dr. Erik Malte Müller

Erik Malte Müller

Head, Professor

Contact information

+49 6421 28-23659 erik.mueller@staff 1 Gutenbergstraße 18
35032 Marburg
G|01 Institutsgebäude (Room: 02004 resp. +2004)

Organizational unit

Philipps-Universität Marburg Psychologie (Fb04) AG Persönlichkeit und Diagnostik Differentielle Psychologie

Personal information
Spokesperson Research Training Group 2271 "Breaking Expectations"
Secretary: Elaine Gurich-Hahn, Room 02054
Office Hour: Tues, 11:30-12:30h

 Research Interests

  • Mechanisms of neuroticism/anxiety and extraversion
  • Links between personality traits and psychological disorders
  • Expectations and expectation violations
  • Brain-heart coupling
  • Action monitoring
  • Fear conditioning and extinction
  • Lucid Dreaming


2015    Habilitation (venia legendi for Psychology), Justus-Liebig Universität Gießen (Gießen, Germany), Department of Psychology
2011    Dr. rer. nat (summa cum laude), Philipps-Universität Marburg (Marburg, Germany), Department of Psychology
2008    Diplom, Philipps-Universität Marburg and Pennsylvania State University (visiting graduate student; GPA: 4.0)
2005    Vordiplom, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Department of Psychology


2014    Young Scientist Award of the German Society for Psychophysiology and its Application (DGPA, € 1.000)
2013    Young Scientist Award for a Distinguished Contribution in EEG Research 2013 (Brain Products, € 1.000)
2013    G.-A. Lienert Stipend (€ 3.200)
2012    Travel scholarship, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD, € 1.200)
2011    Poster award, Society for Psychophysiological Research ($ 300)
2010    Poster award, Society for Psychophysiological Research ($ 300)
2009    Research-Training Award, Society for Psychophysiological Research ($ 5.000)
2007    Outstanding Academic Achievement Award, Pennsylvania State University International Program
2006    Exceptional Academic Achievement Award, Pennsylvania State University International Program
2006    Full-tuition scholarship (two semesters), Pennsylvania State University
2006    One semester scholarship for studying abroad, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)


Panitz, C., Keil, A., & Mueller, E. M. (2019). Extinction-resistant attention to long-term conditioned threat is indexed by selective visuocortical alpha suppression in humans. Scientific reports, 9(1), 1-9.

Mueller, E. M., Sperl, M. J. F., & Panitz, C. (2019). Aversive imagery causes de novo fear conditioning, Psychological Science.

Petereit, P., Rinn, C., Stemmler, G., & Mueller, E.M. (2019). Oxytocin reduces the link between neural and affective responses after social exclusion, Biological Psychology, 145, 224-235.

Stolz, C., Endres, D., & Mueller, E.M. (2019). Threat-conditioned contexts modulate the late positive potential to faces – a mobile EEG/virtual reality study. Psychophysiology, 56, e13308

Sperl, M. F. J., Panitz, C., Rosso, I. M., Dillon, D. G., Kumar, P., Hermann, A., Whitton, A. E., Hermann, C., Pizzagalli, D. A., & Mueller, E. M. (2018). Fear extinction recall modulates human fronto-medial theta and amygdala activity. Cerebral Cortex, 29, 701-715.

Lueckel, M., Panitz, C., Nater, U. M., & Mueller, E. M. (2018). Reliability and robustness of feedback-evoked brain-heart coupling after placebo, dopamine, and noradrenaline challenge. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 132, 298-310.

Sperl, M. F., Panitz, C., Hermann, C., & Mueller, E. M. (2016). A pragmatic comparison of noise burst and electric shock unconditioned stimuli for fear conditioning research with many trials. Psychophysiology, 53(9), 1352-1365.

Klucken, T., Kruse, O., Schweckendiek, J., Kuepper, Y., Mueller, E. M., Hennig, J., & Stark, R. (2016). No evidence for blocking the return of fear by disrupting reconsolidation prior to extinction learning. Cortex, 79, 112-122.

Mueller, E. M., & Pizzagalli, D. A. (2016). One-year-old fear memories rapidly activate human fusiform gyrus. Social cognitive and affective neuroscience, 11(2), 308-316.

Munk, A. J., Wielpuetz, C., Osinsky, R., Mueller, E. M., Grant, P., & Hennig, J. (2016). Specific Reaction Patterns to Distinct Positive Emotional Cues Related to Incentive Motivation in Dependence of the Taq1A-Polymorphism: Molecular Genetic Associations of Early and Late Event-Related Potentials. Neuropsychobiology, 73(1), 23-34.

Panitz, C., Hermann, C., & Mueller, E. M. (2015). Conditioned and extinguished fear modulate functional corticocardiac coupling in humans. Psychophysiology, 52(10), 1351-1360.

Auerbach, R. P., Stewart, J. G., Stanton, C. H., Mueller, E. M., & Pizzagalli, D. A. (2015). Emotion processing biases and resting EEG activity in depressed adolescents. Depression and anxiety, 32(9), 693.

Mueller, E.M., Panitz, C., Pizzagalli, D., Hermann, C., & Wacker, J. (2015). Midline theta dissociates agentic extraversion and anhedonic depression. Personality and Individual Differences, 79, 172-177.

Mueller, E.M., Pechtel, P., Cohen, A.L., Douglas, S.R., & Pizzagalli, D. (2015). Potentiated processing of negative feedback in depression is attenuated by anhedonia. Depression and Anxiety, 32, 296-305.

Mueller, E.M., Burgdorf, C., Chavanon, M.-L., Schweiger, D., Wacker, J., & Stemmler, G. (2014). Dopamine blockade eliminates differences in failure processing between agentic introverts and extraverts in an incentive context. Cognitive Affective and Behavioral Neuroscience, 14, 756-768.

Mueller, E.M., Burgdorf, C., Chavanon, M.-L., Schweiger, D., Hennig, J., Wacker, J., Stemmler, G. (2014). The COMT Val158Met polymorphism regulates the effect of a dopamine antagonist on the feedback-related negativity. Psychophysiology, 51. 805-809.

Mueller, E.M., Panitz, C., Hermann, C., Pizzagalli, D.A., (2014). Prefrontal Oscillations during Recall of Conditioned and Extinguished Fear in Humans. Journal of Neuroscience, 34, 7059-7066

Mueller, E.M., Panitz, C., Nestoriuc, Y., Stemmler, G., & Wacker, J. (2014). Panic disorder and serotonin reuptake inhibitors predict coupling of cortical and cardiac activity. Neuropsychopharmacology, 39, 507-514.

Mueller, E.M., Stemmler, G., Hennig, J. & Wacker, J. (2013). 5-HTTLPR and anxiety modulate brain-heart covariation. Psychophysiology, 50, 441-453.

Panitz, C.P., Wacker, J., Stemmler, G. & Mueller, E.M. (2013). Brain-heart coupling at the P300 latency is linked to anterior cingulate cortex and insula - a cardio-electroencephalographic covariance tracing study. Biological Psychology, 94, 185-191.

Wacker, J., Mueller, E. M., Pizzagalli, D. A. Hennig, J., Stemmler, G. (2013). Dopamine D2 receptor blockade reverses the association between trait BAS and frontal asymmetry in an approach motivational context. Psychological Science, 24, 489-497.

Wacker, J., Mueller, E., Stemmler, G. (2013). Prenatal testosterone and personality: Increasing the specificity of trait assessment to detect consistent associations with digit ratio (2D:4D). Journal of Research in Personality, 47, 171-177.

Mueller, E.M., Evers, E.A., Wacker, J., & van der Veen, F. (2012). Acute tryptophan depletion attenuates brain-heart coupling following external feedback. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6, 77.

Seemüller, A., Mueller, E. M., & Rösler, F. (2012). EEG-power and -coherence changes in a unimodal and a crossmodal working memory task with visual and kinesthetic stimuli. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 83, 87-95.

Wacker, J., Mueller, E. M., Hennig, J., & Stemmler, G. (2012). How to consistently link extraversion and intelligence to the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Gene: On defining and measuring psychological phenotypes in neurogenetic research. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 102, 427-444.

Mueller, E.M., Makeig, S., Stemmler, G., Hennig, J.,& Wacker, J. (2011). Dopamine effects on human error processing depend on COMT VAL158MET genotype. Journal of Neuroscience, 31, 15818-15825.

Mueller, E. M., Hofmann, S.G., & Cherry, J. (2010). The type IV phosphodiesterase inhibitor rolipram disturbs expression and extinction of conditioned fear in mice. Neuropharmacology, 59,  1 – 8.

Mueller, E. M., Nguyen, J., Ray, W., & Borkovec, T. D. (2010). Future oriented decision-making in Generalized Anxiety Disorder is evident across different versions of the Iowa Gambling Task. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 41, 165-171.

Mueller, E. M., Stemmler, G., & Wacker, J. (2010). Single-trial EEG predicts cardiac acceleration: A time-lagged P-correlation approach for studying neurovisceral connectivity. Neuroscience, 166, 491-500.

Mueller, E. M., Hofmann, S. G., Santesso, D. L., Meuret, A. E., Bitran, S., & Pizzagalli, D. A. (2009). Electrophysiological evidence of attentional biases in social anxiety disorder. Psychological Medicine, 39, 1141-1152.

Santesso, D. L., Meuret, A. E., Hofmann, S. G., Mueller, E. M., Ratner, K. G., Roesch, E. B., & Pizzagalli, D.A. (2008). Electrophysiological correlates of spatial orienting towards angry faces: A source localization study. Neuropsychologia, 46, 1338-1348.

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