Dr. Anne-Kathrin Bräscher




12/2015 Licensure for psychological psychotherapy for childhood and youth (ZPP, Heidelberg)
09/2015 Licensure for psychological psychotherapy (ZPP, Mannheim)
04/2014 Doctor of Social Sciences, University of Mannheim (“Cognitive and Behavioral Context of Pain Facilitation - Nocebo Conditioning and Uncontrollability-Induced Sensitization”, supervised by Prof. Dr. Rupert Hölzl
03 - 08/2011 Research visit at the Alan Edwards Centre for Research on Pain (AECRP), McGill University, Montreal (Canada), supervised by Prof. Dr. Petra Schweinhardt
09/2009 - 08/2012 PhD studies at the “Center for Doctoral Studies in Social and Behavioral Sciences” of the “Graduate School of Economic and Social Sciences”, University of Mannheim
08/2009 Diploma in psychology (excellent)


Academic and Clinical Positions


since 05/2016 Deputy head of the outpatient clinic (stellvertretende Leitung der Forschungs- und Lehrambulanz), University of Mainz
since 09/2015 Clinical psychologist, outpatient department, University of Mainz
since 10/2014 Research assistant, Department of Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy & experimental Psychopathology (Prof. Dr. Witthöft), University of Mainz, Germany
09/2012 - 09/2014 Research assistant, pain center (PD Dr. Justus Benrath), University Medical Center Mannheim, University of Heidelberg, Mannheim
04 - 09/2013 Research assistant, research outpatient department (Forschungsambulanz), Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim
10/2012 - 03/2013 Psychological training II, outpatient clinic, Department of Psychosomatics and Psychotherapeutic Medicine, Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim
09/2011 - 09/2012 Psychological training I, ward 4B, Department of Psychosomatics and Psychotherapeutic Medicine, Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim
11/2007 - 08/2009 Student assistant, University of Mannheim, Otto Selz Institute for Applied Psychology, Mannheim, Germany


Scholarships and Awards


10/2018 NachwuchsFörderpreis Schmerz 2018 by the German Pain Society (Deutsche Schmerzgesellschaft; 7.000 €)
07/2018 travel grant by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD; 2.251 €)
04/2018 travel grant by the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP; 1.000 USD)
04/2017 travel grant by the Society for Interdisciplinary Placebo Studies (300 €)
07/2015 research funding by the University of Mainz (7500 €)
05/2012 research funding by the Heinrich-Vetter-Stiftung (3000 €)
09/2010 - 08/2012 PhD scholarship from the German National Academic Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes)
09/2010 PhD scholarship from the German Pain Society (Deutsche Schmerzgesellschaft; 4000 €)
09/2009 - 08/2010 Scholarship from the Graduate School of Economic & Social Sciences (DFG excellence initiative)
03/2010 Scholarship from the DGPs group “Biological Psychology and Neuropsychology” for the spring school “fMRI in psychological research”
06/2007 - 08/2009 Student scholarship from the German National Academic Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes)



Becker, S.*, Bräscher, A.-K.*, Bannister, S., Bensafi, M., Calma-Birling, D., Chan, R.C.K., Eerola, T., Ellings-en, D.-M., Ferdenzi, C., Hanson, J. L., Joffily, M., Lidhar, N. K., Lowe, L. J., Martin, L. J., Musser, E. D., Noll-Hussong, M., Olino, T. M., Pintos Lobo, R., Wang, Y. (in press). Pleasure and displeasure as core processes of feelings - the role of hedonics in the Human Affectome: from brain processing to language. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews.

Bräscher, A.-K., Witthöft, M. (2019). Nocebo hyperalgesia induced by implicit conditioning. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry 64C 106-112.Full Text

Velten, J., Bräscher, A.-K.,Fehm, L., Fladung, A., Fydrich, T., Heider, J., Hentschel., S., Limberg-Thiesen, A., Lutz, W., Margraf., J., Schöttke, H., Witthöft, M., & Hoyer., J. (2018). Behandlungsdiagnosen in deutschen Hochschulambulanzen im Jahr 2016. Ergebnisse einer Machbarkeitsstudie zum KODAP-Projekt. Zeitschrift für Klinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie 47 175-185. Full Text

Müller, M. Bräscher, A.-K., (2018). Placeboeffekte bei chronischen Schmerzen: Forschungsstand und klinische Anwendung . Anästhesiologie, Intensivmedizin, Notfallmedizin und Schmerztherapie 53 605-617. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K., Witthöft, M., Becker, S. (2018). The underestimated significance of conditioning in placebo hypoalgesia and nocebo hyperalgesia. Pain Research and Management, Article ID 6841985, 8 pages. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K., Kleinböhl, D., Hölzl, R., Becker, S. (2017). Differential Classical Conditioning of the Nocebo Effect: Increasing Heat-Pain Perception Without Verbal Suggestions. Frontiers in Psychology 8. 2163. Full Text

Witthöft, M., Freitag, I., Nußbaum, C., Bräscher, A.-K., Jasper, F., Bailer, J., Rubin, J. (2017). On the origin of worries about modern health hazards: experimental evidence for a conjoint influence of media reports and personality traits. Psychology and Health 33(3) 361-380. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K., Raymaekers, K. Van den Bergh, O., Witthöft, M. (2017). Are media reports able to cause somatic symptoms attributed to WiFi radiation? An experimental test of the negative expectation hypothesis. Environmental Research 156 265-271. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K.*, Becker, S.*, Hoeppli, M.-E., Schweinhardt, P. (2016). Different brain circuitries mediating controllable and uncontrollable pain. Journal of Neuroscience 36(18) 5013-5025. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K.*, Zuran, D.* Feldmann, R. E., Benrath, J. (2016). Patient survey on the evaluation of different materials of aligners in Invisalign® therapy. Journal of Orofacial and Orthopedics 77(6) 432-438. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K.*, Blunk, J. A.*, Bauer, K., Feldmann, R. E., Benrath, J. (2014). Comprehensive curriculum for phantom-based training of ultrasound-guided intercostal and stellate ganglion blocks. Pain Medicine 15(10) 1647-1656. Full Text

Bräscher, A.-K.*, Blunk, J.*, Söhle, S., Feldmann, Jr., R. E., Bauer, M., Benrath, J. (2014). [Cost minimization analysis in postoperative pain management: economic efficiency and effectiveness of two infusion pump systems]. Der Anästhesist 63(10) 783-792. Full Text

Dusch, M.*, Bräscher, A.-K.*, Kopf, A., Treede, R. E., Benrath, J. (2014). [Medical educational evaluation of the German Pain Congress 2012. In the context of the CanMEDS physician competency framework]. Der Schmerz 28(5) 520-527. Full Text

Wei, K., Feldmann Jr., R. E., Bräscher, A.-K., Benrath, J. (2014). Ultrasound-guided stellate ganglion blocks combined with pharmacological and occupational therapy in complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS): a pilot case series ad interim. Pain Medicine 15(12) 2120-7. Full Text

Kortüm, F., Bräscher, A.-K., Schmitz-Buchholz, D., Feldmann Jr., R. E., Benrath, J. (2014). [Interventional pain therapy: Results of a survey among specialized pain physicians in Germany]. Der Schmerz 28(6) 591-599. Full Text

Puetzler, J., Feldmann Jr., R. E., Bräscher, A.-K., Gerhardt, A., Benrath, J. (2014). Improvements in Health-Related Quality of Life by Comprehensive Cancer Pain Therapy: A Pilot Study with Breast Cancer Outpatients under Palliative Chemotherapy. Oncology Research and Treatment 37(9) 456-462. Full Text


Bräscher, A.-K. (2015). [Behavior therapy: case video clips for diagnostics and treatment]. Verhaltenstherapie 25(1) 69-70. (DVD Review)

Bräscher, A.-K. (2016). Soziale Angststörung. Fortschritte der Psychotherapie. Verhaltenstherapie 26(4) 295-296.

Professional Affiliations

  • International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP)
  • German Psychological Society (DGPs)
  • Society for Neuroscience (SfN)
  • Society for Interdisciplinary Placebo Studies (SIPS)


 Research Interests

  • pain perception, psychological pain modulation
  • bodily symptoms, symptom perception
  • placebo and nocebo effects
  • classical conditioning
  • idiopathic environmental intolerances
  • psychophysiology, fMRI