2016: Crossroads

2016 was our fifth year as a team and in retrospect, saw as standing at a crossroads. For some of us, this meant to wander off on roads heading somewhere else, while others came to join us or returned to join again. Also, this involved some decisions to go or not go down a possible and possibly promising path. There were several highlights (in some sort of descending order), such as the return of Joey, the start of Helen, Roshin, Milena and Dilan, our open placebo SNF grant, our special issue in Verhaltenstherapie on Placebo and Psychotherapy, the Habilitation of Yoon-Phaik, the JME paper, the short visit of Prof. Nathan Consedine, the Teaching Award (which was of course erroneously given to only one, in spite of truly being a team effort), one of us becoming study dean (guess who…) and the (hopefully…) all time-high of 26 master’s theses, just to name a few. But at the close of 2016, it became evident that we do this together, whatever road we’ll travel. JG, February 2017

Members of the division 2016

Judith Alder, Johanna Birkhäuer, Mara Bruggisser, Jens Gaab, Heike Gerger, Sebastian Hasler, Karin Hediger, Nadja Heimgartner, Joe Kossowsky, Helen Koechlin, Roshin Kunnel John, Cosima Locher, Sibylle Meier, Yoon Phaik Ooi, Milena Petignat, Dilan Sezer, Christoph Werner, Boby Xavier Thaiparambil

External PhD’s

Mareike Busmann, Anna Denzinger, Nina Kind, Can Nakkas, Verena Ehrbar, Astrid Grossert, Martin Prätzlich, Tania Perez, Evelin Hug, Stefanie Neubrand, Dena Sadeghi Bahmani, Nathalie Schenk, Sandra Scherer, Christian Schrobildgen, Theresa Tondorf


Publications of members of the division in 2016 (total impact factor 25.7)
  1. Grossert, A., Urech, C., Alder, J., Gaab, J., Berger, T., & Hess, V. (2016). Web-based stress management for newly diagnosed cancer patients (STREAM-1): A randomized, wait-list controlled intervention study. BMC Cancer, 16, 838. DOI: 10.1186/s12885-016-2866-0, IF: 3.3
  2. Hall, K. T., Kossowsky, J., Oberlander, T. F., Kaptchuk, T. J., Saul, J. P., Wyller, V. B., Fagermoen, E., Sulheim, D., Gjerstad, J., Winger, A., & Mukamal, K. J. (2016). Genetic variation in catechol-O-methyltransferase modifies effects of clonidine treatment in chronic fatigue syndrome. Pharmacogenomics Journal, 16(5), 454-460. DOI: 10.1038/tpj.2016.53, IF: 4.2
  3. Hediger, K. (2016). Freie Interaktionen zwischen Patient und Pferd in der pferdegestützten Psychotherapie. In: Gäng, M. (Hrsg.) Therapeutisches Reiten. Ernst Reinhardt, München, 105-124.
  4. Ooi, Y. P., Goh, D. H.-L., Mekler, E. D., Tuch, A. N., Boon, J., Ang, R. P., Fung, D., & Gaab, J. (2016). Understanding player perceptions of RegnaTales, a mobile game for teaching social problem solving skills. Proceedings of the 31st Annual ACM Symposium on Applied Computing, 167-172. DOI: 10.1145/2851613.2851678
  5. Ooi, Y. P.,  Sung, S. C., Raja, M., Kwan, C., Koh, J. B. K., & Fung, D. (2016). Web-based CBT for the treatment of selective mutism: Results from a pilot randomized controlled trial in Singapore. Journal of Speech Pathology and Therapy, 1(2), 112. DOI: 10.4172/2472-5005.1000112
  6. Barth J, Munder T, Gerger H, Nüesch E, Trelle S, Znoj HJ, Jüni P & Cuijpers, P. (2016). Comparative efficacy of seven psychotherapeutic interventions for patients with depression: A network meta-analysis. Focus, 14(2), 229-243. DOI: 10.1176/appi.focus.140201
  7. Gerger, H. & Gaab, J. (2016). Posttraumatic stress disorder outcome research: Why moderators should not be neglected in meta-analyses. In: El-Baalbaki, G. & Fortin, C. (Eds.): Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, Rijeka: InTech. DOI: 10.5772/64266
  8. Trachsel, M., & Gaab, J. (2016). Disclosure of incidental constituents of psychotherapy as a moral obligation for psychiatrists and psychotherapists. Journal of Medical Ethics, 42(8), 493-495. DOI: 10.1136/medethics-2015-102986, IF: 1.5
  9. Prätzlich, M., Kossowsky, J., Gaab, J., Krummenacher, P. (2016). Impact of Short-Term Meditation and Expectation on Executive Brain Functions. Behavioural Brain Research, Oct 14;297:268-276. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2015.10.012. IF: 3.0
  10. Gaab, J. Jiménez, J., Voneschen, L., Meyer. A.M., Nater, U.M., Krummenacher, P. (2016). Psychosocial stress-induced analgesia - an examination of effects on heat pain threshold and tolerance and of neuroendocrine mediation. Neuropsychobiology; 87-95, DOI: 10.1159/000454986, IF: 2.25
  11. Ehrbar V & Urech C, Alder J, Harringer K, Zanetti Dällenbach R, Rochlitz C, Tschudin S. (2016) Decision-making about fertility preservation - qualitative data on young cancer patients’ attitudes and needs. Arch Womens Ment Health, 19(4), 695-699. IF: 2.2
  12. Wittwer A, Krummenacher P, La Marca R, Ehlert, U, Folkers, G (2016). Salivary Alpha-Amylase Correlates with Subjective Heat Pain Perception. Pain Med. 2016 Jun;17(6):1131-6. doi: 10.1093/pm/pnv085. Epub 2016 Jan 13. IF: 2.3
  13. Ooi., Y. P., Weng, S.-J., Magiati, I., Ang, R.P., Goh, T. J., Fung, D.S.S., & Sung, M.(2016). Factors influencing Agreement between Parent and Child Reports of Anxiety Symptoms in Children with an High-functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, 28(3); 407-424. DOI: 10.1007/s10882-016-9481-5, IF: 1.6
  14. Ang, R.P., Tan, J.L., Goh, D.H., Huan, V.S., Ooi, Y.P., Boon, J.S.T., & Fung, D.S.S. (2016). A game-based approach to teaching social problem-solving skills. In: Zheng, R. & Gardner, M. (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Serious Games for Educational Applications (pp. 168-195). Hershey, PA: IGI Global. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0513-6.ch008
  15. Gaab, J. & Knafla, I.(2016). Was wirkt in Beratung und Therapie? – Ein kontextuelles Modell. In: Knafla, I., Schär, M., & Steinebach, C. (Hrsg.), Jugendliche stärken. Resilienz- und ressourcenorientierte Beratung und Therapie. Weinheim/Basel: Beltz Verlag.
  16. Werner, C., Hasler, S., Birkhäuer, J., Gaab, J. (2016). Effekte, Bedingungen und Anwendung von Placebos. PSYCH up2date 2016; 10(02): 151-161, DOI: 10.1055/s-0042-1006806
  17. Rief, W., & Gaab, J. (2016). Facing the dark side of the intervention – Addressing the relation between psychotherapy and placebo. Verhaltenstherapie, 26, 6-7. DOI: 10.1159/000443975, IF: 0.6
  18. Gerger, H. & Gaab, J. (2016). Researcher allegiance as hidden moderator in psychotherapy outcome research. Verhaltenstherapie, 26, 41-45. DOI:10.1159/000443543, IF: 0.6
  19. Locher, C., Hasler, S., Gaab, J. (2016). When do psychotherapeutic placebos work? A critical review on the example of systematic desensitization. Verhaltenstherapie, 26, 9-20. DOI: 10.1159/000443464, IF: 0.6
  20. Loh, A. B. H., Ooi, Y. P., Lim, C. G.,  Fung, D., & Khoo, A. (2016). Managing Adolescents with Gaming Problems: The Singapore Counsellors’ Perspective, International Journal of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, 6, 7-13. doi: 10.5923/j.ijpbs.20160601.02. IF:0.8
  21. Scherer, S., Alder, J. Gaab, J., Berger, T., Ihde, K., Urech, C. (2016). Patient satisfaction and psychological well-being after internet-based cognitive behavioral stress management (IB-CBSM) for women with preterm labor: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2015.10.011, IF: 2.7
New research grants (total funding 2016: CHF 362’077)
  • Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung, Schweiz SNF (2016-2019). Taking the placebo further: open placebo. PI: PRof. Dr. Jens Gaab; CHF218’008
  • Stiftung pro REHAB Basel (2016 – 2019): Unterstützung des Forschungsprojektes «effects of animal-assisted therapy in patients with brain-injuries» und Teilfinanzierung der post-doc Stelle von Karin Hediger. PI: Dr. Karin Hediger & Prof. Dr. Jakob Zinsstag. CHF 144'069.85
Running funded projects in 2016
  • Stiftung pro REHAB Basel (2013 – 2016): Unterstützung des Forschungsprojektes «effects of animal-assisted therapy in patients with brain-injuries» und Teilfinanzierung der post-doc Stelle von Karin Hediger. Antrassteller: Dr. Karin Hediger & Prof. Dr. Jakob Zinsstag. CHF 102'487
  • Forschungsfonds, Universität Basel (2015 – 2016): Unterstützung des Projekts «Kurzzeiteffekte von tiergestützter Therapie auf den Rehabilitationsprozess von Patienten mit Hirnverletzungen des REHAB Basel». Antragsstellerin: Dr. Karin Hediger. CHF 76'195
  • Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung, Schweiz, SNF Advanced Postdoc.Mobility (2015-2016): Harnessing the Placebo Effect to Augment the Pharmacological Treatment of Children with Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, Antragsteller Dr. Joe Kossowsky, CHF 75’000
  • Max Zeller Söhne AG (2014-2016). A phase IV, randomised, placebo controlled study to investigate the effects of Zeller Entspannung on cortisol responses in healthy volunteers with acute stress – a mode of action study with cortisol measurement in saliva. Principal investigator: Prof. Dr. Jens Gaab. CHF 106’717
  • Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung, Schweiz, SNF doc.ch grant (2014-2016): The Effect of Interpersonal Trust on Treatment Outcome. Antragstellerin Johanna Birkhäuer MSc. CHF 120'259
  • Krebsliga Schweiz (2013-2016): Web-based stress management for newly diagnosed cancer patients (STREAM-1): a randomized, wait-list controlled intervention study. Dr. Corinne Urech (lead applicant), PD. Dr. Judith Alder, Prof. Dr. Thomas Berger, Prof. Dr. Jens Gaab, Prof. Dr. Viviane Hess (all co-applicants), CHF 252’300
  • Departement für Entwicklung und Zusammenarbeit, Swiss Cooperation Office (2012-2016). Principal investigators: Prof. Dr. Jens Gaab, lic. phil. Naser Morina (Universitätsspital Zürich), Ass.-Prof. Dr. Nexhmedin Morina (Universität Amsterdam): Support to Clinical Psychology in Kosovo. CHF 403'910.


Spring semester 2016

Bachelor, Seminar: Gesprächsführung und Kommunikationstraining (Nadja Heimgartner)
Bachelor, Seminar: Gesprächsführung und Kommunikationstraining (Jens Gaab)
Bachelor, Vorlesung: Somatopsychologie und Psychophysiologie (Jens Gaab)
Master, Vorlesung: Klinische Somatopsychologie (Jens Gaab & Cosima Locher)
Master, Kolloquium (alle Abteilungsmitglieder)
Master, Masterprojekt: Klinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie

Fall semester 2016

Bachelor, Vorlesung: Klinische Kinder- und Jugendpsychologie (Judith Blatter & Meunier & Marnie Reed)
Bachelor, Vorlesung: Psychotherapie (Jens Gaab)
Bachelor, Seminar: Gesprächsführung und Kommunikationstraining (Nadja Heimgartner)
Master, Theorieseminar: Einführung in die Placebo- und Noceboforschung (Cosima Locher)
Master, Vorlesung: Diagnostik, Ätiologie und Therapie psychischer Störungen (Jens Gaab)
Master, Fallseminar: Erwachsenenpsychotherapie  (Nadja Heimgartner)
Master, Theorieseminar: Grundlagen der Psychoonkologie (Judith Alder)
Master, Forschungskolloquium (alle Abteilungsmitglieder)
Master, Masterprojekt: Klinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie


Prof. Dr. Jens Gaab: Teaching Excellence Award 2016, University of Basel, Category: Lehrdogmenbrecher

  • Dr. Célia Steinlin-Danielsson: Belastungen und Schutzfaktoren bei pädagogischen Mitarbeitenden in der stationären Kinder- und Jugendhilfe
Master theses
  1. Eleonore Waltenspül. Short-Term Effect of Animal-Assisted Therapy on Motivation of Brain-Injured Patients
  2. Stefan Thommen. Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) in Neurorehabilitation: Differences in the Duration of Social Communication and Interaction Between AAT- and Conventional Therapy Sessions"
  3. Romana Camenzind. Animal-Assisted Therapy: Short-Term Effects on Emotion and Heart Rate/Heart Rate Variability of Brain-Injured Patients”
  4. Vanya Gocheva. Animal-Assisted Therapy in Brain-Injured Patients: Short-Term Effects on Attention Span and Concentration”
  5. Lorena Bartolomé Garcia. The Influence of Endogenous Cortisol on the Placebo Response
  6. Sandra Basset. Das Bedürfnis nach psychoonkologischer Unterstützung von Krebspatienten und der Zusammenhang mit psychosozialer Belastung, erlebter Bedrohlichkeit und persönlichen Einstellungsvariablen zur psychologischen Versorgung
  7. Sven Degen. Effects of an Online Recruitment Intervention on Recruitment Outcome for a Guided Online Self-Help Program for Cancer Patients
  8. Antje Frey Nascimento.Predictors of Psycho-Oncological Service Uptake: A Mixed Methods Analysis Including Patients’ Motives
  9. Lukas Führer. Progression of Patient-Therapist Heart Rate Linkage over Complete Conversational Therapies: a Two Case Study
  10. Milena Hauke. The Influence of Endogenous Cortisol on the Conditioned Placebo Analgesia Response
  11. Nora Hügli. The Absence of an Empathic Relationship Turns Placebo into Nocebo
  12. Luisa Kraus. Impact of Contextualizing Information on Aesthetic Experience
  13. Debora Neyer. The impact of self-esteem on communication skills and sexual satisfaction: a mediation analysis
  14. Mutram Peters. Veränderungserfahrungen und Ursachenzuschreibungen in Erzählungen über die medizinische Rehabilitation - Eine qualitative Analyse von narrativen Interviews mit ehemaligen Rehabilitanden
  15. Wüest Alexandra. Fertility preservation (FP): knowledge, attitude and decisional conflict (DC) in young female cancer patients
  16. Canan Özden Effects of a Herbal Remedy on HRV Rates and Mood upon Acute Stress
  17. Celine Ott. Art In Context
  18. Christina Esch Attachment and Affect – The Impact on Trust in the Investigator
  19. Christine Bratschi. Investigating the Influence of Endogenous Cortisol on Placebo Response- a Pilot Study
  20. Edward Gray. Evaluation of placebo in a randomised, placebo controlled study on the effects of a herbal remedy to acute stress
  21. Jennifer Hartung. The role of psychological flexibility in a web-based stress-management program for cancer patients
  22. Michaela Koch. Randomised Controlled Evaluation of a Herbal Remedy on Acute Stress Response in Healthy Subjects
  23. Franziska Prinz. Psychometric Evaluation of the Contextual Model Questionnaire
  24. Stefanie Urech. The Influence of Endogenous Cortisol on the Placebo Response
  25. Tamara Maria Uebersax. Inwiefern beeinflusst die Placebo-Erwartung den Placeboeffekt im Rahmen eines Placebo- Analgesie-Paradigmas?
  26. Yael Spira. Effect of Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation, adjunct to Methylphenidate, for the Treatment of ADHD Symptoms in Children

Centre for Psychotherapy

The Centre for Psychotherapy is associated to the Division of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy and offers clinical assessments, psychotherapy, and psychotherapeutic training for mental disorders and difficulties as well as psychological support during somatic diseases and disorders for all ages. The mean number of appointments per month in 2016 was 104, which represents yet another 10% increase with regard to yesteryear. The mean numbers of appointments per month and since the start of the Centre for Psychotherapy are shown below.