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Principal Investigator 

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Dr. Micah Allen

Dr. Micah Allen is a computational neuroscientist whose research utilises interdisciplinary approaches to understand the mechanisms inter-linking brain-body interaction, interoception, and metacognition. He completed a BSc in experimental psychology at the University of Central Florida, an MA in philosophy and cognitive science at the University of Hertfordshire, and a PhD in health neuroscience at Aarhus University. Afterward, he was a post-doctoral research fellow at University College London and Cambridge Psychiatry. He currently holds a position as a Professor of Computational Psychiatry at the Institute of Clinical Medicine at Aarhus University in Denmark, and is also an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at Cambridge Psychiatry.


Prof. Allen's research combines computational models with pharmacological and behavioural interventions to understand and remediate deficits of brain-body interaction and self-awareness in psychiatric, health-harming, and neurological disorders. His research lab, the Embodied Computation Group, utilizes methods from computational neuroscience, machine-learning, and perceptual decision-making to address basic, clinical, and applied research questions regarding these and other topics. The lab enjoys a transparent, open-science research ethos; all of our data, code, tools, and other materials are routinely shared (link).

Prof. Allen has received several prestigious research grants, including the ERC Starting Grant and the Lundbeckfonden Fellowship. He is also the recipient of the British Cognitive Neuroscience Early Career Award, a former Fellow of the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies, and co-chair of the Brain-Body Interactions Column of the Neuroscience Academy Denmark. In addition to his contributions to neuroscience and computational psychiatry, Prof. Allen is a passionate advocate for open science and has developed several well-recognized open-source tools, including Raincloud Plots (link), Systole (link), Cardioception (link), and the respiratory resistance sensitivity task (link).


Dr. Arthur Courtin

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Dr Courtin completed his PhD in Pain Neuroscience in the lab of André Mouraux, at the Université catholique de Louvain (UCL). He joined the lab as a joint ECG-BPP postdoctoral fellow, working on the ERC cannabodies project. His work utilizes psychophysics and computational modelling to understand how cannabinoids influence pain learning.  

Dr. Niia Nikolova 


Dr. Nikolova is interested in how we experience the environment depending on our internal conditions. As a postdoc in the Embodied Computation Group, she designs psychophysical tasks and work on fMRI analyses to examine the internal processes of perceptual learning and decision making. Before coming to Aarhus, she worked with William McGeown (University of Strathclyde) on a multimodal project investigating hypnotic suggestibility, as well as with Lars Muckli (University of Glasgow) to look at illusory perception and binocular rivalry. In 2018, she completed her PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research & City University of London with the supervision of Michael Morgan and Josh Solomon, during which she examined how we perceive radial movement, using the motion aftereffect. Aside from research, she is involved in science outreach in schools, she plays the flute, and makes various electronic projects.

Dr. Leah Banellis


Dr. Banellis is interested in brain-body interactions involved in psychiatric symptoms, consciousness and interoception. For her PhD, she researched brain-heart interactions in healthy cognition and patients with disorders of consciousness, supervised by Dr. Damian Cruse at the University of Birmingham. Also with Dr. Cruse she completed her MSc in Brain Imaging and Cognitive Neuroscience, researching electrophysiological markers of conscious speech processing. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Psychology with Human Biology at Plymouth University, with her BSc project on embodiment and meditation with Prof. Susan Blackmore

Postdoctoral Fellows

Dr. Ashley Tyrer


Dr. Tyrer completed the Wellcome Trust PhD Programme in Neural Dynamics at the University of Bristol, where she worked together with Prof. Rosalyn Moran on active inference models of learning, decision-making, and noradrenaline. As a postdoctoral fellow in the ECG, Dr Tyrer is utilizing magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate the neural mechanisms underpinning the control of learning and interoception by central and peripheral noradrenaline. 

Malthe Brændholt Sørensen

Before joining the ECG, Dr. Malthe Brændholt Sørensen completed his training as a medical doctor. His PhD project investigates “Breathing in the Brain: A Computational Approach” by combining psychophysics, neurophysiology, and modelling to test hypotheses about how respiratory rhythms influence perception.


Melina Vejlø


Melina Vejlø is a master student of the Cognitive Science programme at Aarhus University and a PhD student with the ECG. Melina is doing her PhD on how Cannabinoids (THC and CBD) modulate and affect effort, reward and effort prediction errors, feelings of fatigue and interception. 

Farah Hina

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PhD Students 

Alexandrina Vasilichi


Alex Vasilichi is a joint PhD student in Computational Neuroscience at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics and the Embodied Computation Group. In her PhD, co-supervised by Professors Peter Dayan and Micah Allen, Alex is investigating the computational mechanisms by which interoceptive signals control affective expectations and learning. 

ECG Alumni

Nicolas Legrand, was a postdoctoral fellow, working on cardiac interoception, the visceral mind-project, and other related tasks. He has since moved onto to a postdoc at Chris Mathy's lab, close by at the Interacting Minds Center. 2019-2022.

Sofie Rødkjær Blendstrup, was a research assistant, who helped organize the logistics of the Visceral Mind Project and collect data for it. She furthermore, worked briefly on the Cannabodies project. 2021.


Camile Correa, was a Post Doc working on interoception and metacognition at the ECG. 2019-2021.


Anna Stuckert, was a Cognitive Science bachelors student, who worked on various projects in the ECG. The wrote her bachelor thesis in collaboration with the lab on interoception and gambling behavior. 


Peter Waade, was a Cognitive Science master student working on the investigation of COVID-19 induced self-isolation on mental health and interoception. 


Nanna Kildahl Mathiasen, was a Cognitive Science master student who worked as a research assistent at the ECG. She helped out running and analyzing data for the ECG. 2019 - 2020

Sebastian Scott Engen was a Bachelors Student in Cognitive Science. Sebastian’s BSc thesis with the ECG investigated how emotional arousal biases accuracy and meta-cognition for memory. 

Lena Hansen was a Bachelor’s student at Aarhus University, majoring in Cognitive Science. Her thesis concerned the computational modeling of the thermal grill illusion.

Elena Mainetto was a research assistant at Cambridge Psychiatry. She has now gone on to start a PhD at the Donders Institute. 2018-2019. 

Giulia Maistrello was a research assistant at Cambridge Psychiatry. Her research interests included interoception, eating disorders, obesity and meditation. 2018-2019

Laura Huizinga was a visiting Masters Student in our Cambridge Psychiatry lab, where she investigated the influence of obesity and hunger on interoceptive sensitivity. Laura is based at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. 2018-2019


Thomas Schaffhauser. A stochastic detection and retrieval model for the study of metacognition. Dual MSc thesis in Brain and Mind Sciences at UCL. 2016-2017.


Darya, Frank. Arousal induced biases in metacognitive confidence. MSc thesis in Cognitive Neuroscience, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL. 2015-2016.

Calum Glen. Noise-induced bias in metacognition. Supervised research assistant. Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, UCL. 2015-2016.


Daniel Gramm Christensen. Neuroplasticity and cognitive-affective training. Supervised Research Assistant. Aarhus University. 2011-2012.


Beinta M. Rasmussen. Neuroplasticity and cognitive-affective training. Supervised Research Assistant. Aarhus University. 2011-2012.


Joanna Christensen. Neuroplasticity and cognitive-affective training. Supervised MSc thesis. Msc in Biomedical Engineering, Aarhus University. 2011-2012.


Jesper Meyhoff Jensen. Neuroplasticity and cognitive-affective training. Supervised MSc thesis. Msc in Biomedical Engineering. Aarhus University. 2011-2012.

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