Scroll to Section:

Stroke is one of the most frequent neurological disorders, befalling over 250.000 persons each year in Germany alone. The research underlying this video explores the role of non-invasive methods for stroke diagnosis and therapy. The use of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), which produces image-signals on the basis of the oxygen-concentration in the blood, allows for the detection of increased or decreased activity in the brain. ARNO VILLRINGER explains how this method helps detect affected networks of the brain in the acute phase and enables a tracking progress in the chronic phase of a stroke: The networks of disturbed blood flow in the brain correspond to changes in the neurological functions of the patient. By identifying and visualizing the affected areas non-invasively a continuous monitoring of the patient and a targeted application of treatments, e.g. magnetic stimulation or drugs, is possible and is already tested in clinical studies.


Arno Villringer is Director of the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig as well as Director of the Berlin School of Mind and Brain. He holds a professorship in Cognitive Neurology at the University of Leipzig and is affiliated with the Charité Medical School in Berlin where he is an Honorary Professor. After accomplishing his medical training and PhD, Villringer habilitated in Neurology at the Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Germany. Among his research areas are Optical Imaging and Brain Plasticity. His findings in the field of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) contribute significantly to the understanding and treating of stroke-related brain-damage.


Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences

The studies look into the perception, planning, and generation of human cognitive abilities and cerebral processes, and analyse the interaction and common functional bases of their production and perception. Other research focuses on plastic changes in the human brain and the influence this has on various cognitive abilities, and also the neuronal and hormonal basis of modern diseases such as high blood pressure and obesity. In addition, the further development of imaging methods for the neurosciences is a focal point of research at the Institute.

The MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences provides an exciting framework for these topical and alluring theoretical domains, with the full gamut of cognitive and neuroscientific methodology available under one roof.

Show more

Original publication

Identifying the Perfusion Deficit in Acute Stroke With Resting-state Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Lv Y., Margulies D. S., Craddock R. C., Long X., Winter B., Gierhake D., Endres M., Villringer K., Fiebach J. and Villringer A.
Annals of Neurology
Published in 2013

Reading recommendations

Phosphoinositides in Cell Regulation and Membrane Dynamics

De Camilli Pietro and Di Paolo Gilbert
Published in 2006