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InsularAnxiety SIGNED

Insular cortical circuits controlling fear and anxiety

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 InsularAnxiety project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the InsularAnxiety project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "InsularAnxiety" about.

valence    bodily    single    circuit    outcomes    decision    monosynaptic    mice    risks    relying    action    tools    body    integrate    imaging    viral    behaviours    fear    representations    cortex    expertise    sufficiency    appropriate    express    behaviour    sensory    cortical    neuronal    architecture    individual    predicts    connectivity    influencing    ultimate    circuits    cues    photon    reveal    mouse    distributed    learned    plays    danger    emotions    examine    overlooked    risky    predicting    insular    perspective    influences    optogenetic    techniques    lab    largely    risk    mediating    afferents    environment    indicates    feelings    processed    behavioural    anxiety    modern    function    dissect    behaving    signals    tracing    network    animals    constantly    insights    benefits    advantage    vivo    manipulations    safety    microcircuits    carry    how    calcium    optogenetics    cell    safe    amygdala    organization    awake    mechanistically    emotional    guide   

Project "InsularAnxiety" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: Munich
postcode: 80539

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Germany [DE]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙498˙000 €
 EC max contribution 1˙498˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2017-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-03-01   to  2023-02-28


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

How do emotions guide our behaviour? For an appropriate behavioural response, an individual has to constantly integrate bodily feelings, emotional states, and cues from the environment to evaluate the risks and benefits of a future action. A growing body of evidence indicates that the insular cortex, as part of a distributed neuronal network, plays a key role in influencing emotional behaviour. However, how neuronal circuits within the insular cortex function mechanistically is not known. In this proposal, I will focus on the largely overlooked role of the insular cortex in mediating fear- and anxiety-related behaviours. I will address how the insular cortex processes sensory information of different emotional valence, whether it predicts risk, and how it influences emotional behaviour and decision-making. I will present a research program relying on modern tools to dissect neuronal circuit architecture and function in the mouse, such as viral tracing techniques, optogenetics, behavioural analysis and in vivo two-photon imaging in awake behaving mice.

Taking advantage of the technical expertise of my lab, we will reveal the architecture of connectivity-defined insular cortical microcircuits using monosynaptic viral tracing tools. We will address the necessity and sufficiency of connectivity- and cell-type defined microcircuits to express anxiety and learned safety using optogenetic manipulations. In vivo two-photon calcium imaging in awake behaving animals will allow us to examine how representations of sensory cues predicting danger or safety are processed in the insular cortex, which information amygdala afferents carry to the insular cortex, and whether and how neuronal processing in the insular cortex signals risky or safe outcomes. The ultimate goal of this proposal is to provide novel insights into the function and organization of the insular cortex from a network perspective down to the single cell level.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Daniel A. Gehrlach, Nejc Dolensek, Alexandra S. Klein, Ritu Roy Chowdhury, Arthur Matthys, Michaela Junghänel, Thomas N. Gaitanos, Alja Podgornik, Thomas D. Black, Narasimha Reddy Vaka, Karl-Klaus Conzelmann, Nadine Gogolla
Aversive state processing in the posterior insular cortex
published pages: 1424-1437, ISSN: 1097-6256, DOI: 10.1038/s41593-019-0469-1
Nature Neuroscience 22/9 2019-09-26

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The information about "INSULARANXIETY" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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