Pia Brinkmann

About me

2020-03-11 Pia_square

I joined the BAND-Lab in the beginning of 2020 as a PhD, after being accepted to the Promotionsfoerderung of the Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes.

Originally from Germany, my path has lead me to visit new places, always searching for insightful experiences and things to learn, preferably about the brain.

Links to find out more about Pia:




The project I am working on aims at examining sensory gating and predictive processing at the level of the auditory thalamus (i.e. the medial geniculate nucleus, MGN) in patients with tinnitus. Tinnitus can be defined as a ringing in the ears and has been associated with unique neurofunctional signatures in an extensive thalamo-cortical network. We first want to assess how sensory gating and the processing of formal and temporal structures differ between tinnitus patients and healthy controls using EEG. In the following, we aim at actively manipulating thalamo-cortical networks by means of deep brain stimulation, in close collaboration with the Maastricht University Medical Center+ (MUMC+).

  • Tinnitus
  • Sensory gating
  • Auditory processing
  • Thalamo-cortical connections
  • Predictions
  • Timing


  • EEG
  • Behavioural Measures
  • Neuropsychological tests

Qualifications and Professional Experience

  • Jan 2020 – current: PhD candidate at the University of Maastricht, the Netherlands, under supervision of Prof. Sonja A. Kotz and Dr. Michael Schwartze
  • Oct 2019 – Dec 2019: Research intern Rehabilitation Research Center (REVAL) at University of Hasselt, Belgium, Supervision: Prof Raf Meesen, Prof. Peter Feys
  • Nov 2018 – Aug 2019: Research intern at the International Laboratory for Brain, Music and Sound Research (BRAMS) in Montreal, Canada, Supervision: Prof. Simone Dalla Bella
  • Jul 2018 – Aug 2018: Neuropsychological internship at the Center for Neurology and Neuropsychiatry (LVR Clinic) in Duesseldorf, Germany
  • Sep 2017 – Aug 2019: Research Master of Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience at the University of Maastricht, the Netherlands (Neuropsychology)
  • Sep 2016 – Feb 2017: Erasmus student at the University of Loyola Andalucía and University of Seville in Seville, Spain
  • Sep 2014 – Aug 2017: Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of Maastricht, the Netherlands

Selected Publications

  • van Dun, K., Brinkmann, P., Depestele, S., Verstraelen, S., & Meesen, R. (2021). Cerebellar Activation During Simple and Complex Bimanual Coordination: an Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) Meta-analysis. The Cerebellum, 1-27. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12311-021-01261-8
  • van Zwieten, G., Devos, J. V., Kotz, S. A., Ackermans, L., Brinkmann, P., Dauven, L., … & Janssen, M. L. (2021). Deep Brain Stimulation for Refractory Tinnitus: Pilot Study Protocol for a Randomized Double-Blinded Crossover Trial. (preprint)
  • Brinkmann, P., Rigoulot, S., Kadi, M., Schwartze, M., Kotz, S. A., & Dalla Bella, S. (2021). About time: Ageing influences neural markers of temporal predictability. Biological Psychology, 108135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2021.108135
  • Brinkmann, P., Kotz, S. A., Smit, J. V., Janssen, M. L., & Schwartze, M. (2021). Auditory thalamus dysfunction and pathophysiology in tinnitus: a predictive network hypothesis. Brain Structure and Function, 1-18. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00429-021-02284-x

For more details please send an email to p.brinkmann@maastrichtuniversity.nl