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Profile picture of Neeltje van Haren

Prof. N.E.M. (Neeltje) van Haren

Professor Brain development and psychopathology

Professor Brain development and psychopathology

  • Department
  • Child psychiatry
  • Focus area
  • Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder
External Profile



I focus my research on investigating the neurobiological and (social) cognitive basis of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, using experimental cognitive paradigms, neuroimaging, and family and longitudinal designs. Since early in my career I am struck by the severity and bizarreness of symptoms that patients with severe mental illness experience, sometimes resulting in bizarre behavior and dramatically limiting daily life functioning. This in combination with subtlety of the biological abnormalities. My drive is to increase our knowledge about the biology of mood and psychotic disorders by integrating genetic information, (social) cognition, and structural/functional brain measures, with the ultimate goal to predict, prevent and treat these severe disorders.

Education and career

After completing my Master Degree in neuropsychology at the Radboud University in Nijmegen (1996), I started working at the department of Psychiatry of the University Medical Centre Utrecht. Since January 1998 I have contributed to numerous cognitive and brain imaging studies of patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, their family members, and normal controls. I successfully defended my PhD thesis on brain volume changes over time in schizophrenia on October 15th 2004, after which I remained at the Department of Psychiatry as an assistant professor in Psychiatric Neuroimaging. In 2012 I was granted a VIDI (bij NWO) to study the experience of self-agency in relation to psychosis (risk), and I became an Associate Professor at the same department. 

In 2018, I moved to the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology at the Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, where I hold a professorship Brain Development and Psychopathology.

I supervised 10 PhD students who defended their thesis, 4 post-docs and more than 20 research assistants. I currently supervise 4 PhD students and 1 post-doc.


White matter disruptions in patients with bipolar disorder.
Abramovic L, Boks MPM, Vreeker A, Verkooijen S, van Bergen AH, Ophoff RA, Kahn RS, van Haren NEM. (2018). Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2018 Jun;28(6):743-751.

Premorbid IQ subgroups in first episode non affective psychosis patients: Long-term sex differences in function and neurocognition.
Ayesa-Arriola R, Setién-Suero E, Neergaard KD, Belzunces ÀA, Contreras F, van Haren NEM, Crespo-Facorro B. (2018). Schizophr Res. 2018 Jul;197:370-377.

Associations between psychosis endophenotypes across brain functional, structural, and cognitive domains.
Blakey R, Ranlund S, Zartaloudi E, Cahn W, Calafato S, Colizzi M, Crespo-Facorro B, Daniel C, Díez-Revuelta Á, Di Forti M; GROUP, Iyegbe C, Jablensky A, Jones R, Hall MH, Kahn R, Kalaydjieva L, Kravariti E, Lin K, McDonald C, McIntosh AM, Picchioni M, Powell J, Presman A, Rujescu D, Schulze K, Shaikh M, Thygesen JH, Toulopoulou T, Van Haren N, Van Os J, Walshe M, Murray RM, Bramon E. (2018). Psychol Med. 2018 Jun;48(8):1325-1340.

Self-other integration and distinction in schizophrenia: A theoretical analysis and a review of the evidence.
Van der Weiden A, Prikken M, van Haren NE. (2015). Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2015 Oct;57:220-37.

Association of IQ Changes and Progressive Brain Changes in Patients With Schizophrenia.
Kubota M, van Haren NE, Haijma SV, Schnack HG, Cahn W, Hulshoff Pol HE, Kahn RS. (2015). JAMA Psychiatry. 2015 Aug;72(8):803-12.