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Prof. Clemens Kirschbaum, PhD

Research focus

My research focus is the (neuro)endocrinology of stress. Within this broad field, my lab provides both, innovative research tools for the quantification of acute and chronic stress states, and the use of psychological protocols in clinical studies. Besides trauma, metabolic syndrome, and depression, we are conducting longitudinal studies on burnout and cognitive control.​

​Official position 

Chair of Biopsychology, Full-tenured professor at TU Dresden
Open-ended employment contract


Faculty Science / Department of Psychology Technische Universität Dresden

Business address 

Zellescher Weg 19
01069 Dresden, Germany

Academic education and degrees


Diploma Psychology, University of Münster, Germany


PhD, University of Trier, Germany


Habilitation, University of Trier, Germany


Professional career

​1985 - 1986

Teaching Assistant, University of Münster

​1986 - 1991

Teaching Assistant, Department of Psychology, University of Trier

​1991 - 1996

Assistant Professor, University of Trier

​1992 - 1993

Postdoctoral Education, Department of Neuroanatomy and Neurobiology, University of Rochester, USA

​1996 - 1999

Research fellow (Heisenberg scholarship from the German Research Foundation, DFG) at the Center for Psychobiological and Psychosomatic Research at the University of Trier

​1999 - 2003

Full Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, University of Düsseldorf, Germany

​2003 - present

Full Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, TU Dresden, Germany

​Since 2014

Dean of the School of Science, Technische Universität Dresden


Honors, awards and positions


Dissertation Award, University of Trier


Young Investigator Award, Society for the Immunocompromised Host


Neil Miller Award, Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research


Heisenberg scholarship, German Research Foundation


Innovation Award, Foundation for the Advancement of the Center for Psychobiology and Psychosomatic Research


Elsevier Citation Award for the Top Cited Paper in 2006 and 2007

​2008 - 2016

Member of the DFG Fachkollegium 110 „Psychology“


Guest Editor: Psychoneuroendocrinology

​Since 2010

Editorial Board Member: Psychoneuroendocrinology, Psychosomatic Medicine, Stress, International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, Stress & Health

​Since 2010

Member of the Senate of the Technische Universität Dresden

​Since 2013

Member of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina

​Since 2017

Past-President, International Society of Psychoneuroendocrinology


10 most important peer-reviewed papers (10 out of 410], SCOPUS h-index: [124])

  1. Kirschbaum C, Tietz, A, Skoluda N, Dettenborn L. Hair as a retrospective calendar of cortisol production Increased cortisol incorporation into hair in the third trimester of pregnancy. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2009;34:32-37.

  2. Dettenborn L, Tietze A, Bruckner F, Kirschbaum C. Higher cortisol content in hair among long-term unemployed individuals compared to controls. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2010;35(9):1404-1409.

  3. Stalder T, Kirschbaum C, Heinze K, Steudte S, Foley P et al. Use of hair cortisol analysis to detect hypercortisolism during active drinking phases in alcohol-dependent individuals. Biological Psychology. 2010;85(3):357-360.

  4. Steudte S, Kolassa IT, Stalder T, Pfeiffer A, Kirschbaum C, Elbert T. Increased cortisol concentrations in hair of severely traumatized Ugandan individuals with PTSD. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2011;36(8):1193-1200.

  5. Stalder T, Kirschbaum C. Analysis of cortisol in hair - state of the art and future directions. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity. 2012;26(7):1019-1029.

  6. Stalder T, Steudte S, Alexander N, Miller R, Gao W … Kirschbaum C. Cortisol in hair, body mass index and stress-related measures. Biological Psychology. 2012;90(3);218-223.

  7. Gao W, Stalder T, Foley P, Rauh M, Denga H, Kirschbaum C. Quantitative analysis of steroid hormones in human hair using acolumn-switching LC–APCI–MS/MS assay. Journal of Chromatography B. 2013;928:1-8.

  8. Stalder T, Kirschbaum C, Alexander N, Bornstein SR, Gao W et al. Cortisol in Hair and the Metabolic Syndrome. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. 2013;98(6):2573-2580.

  9. Steudte-Schmiedgen S, Kirschbaum C, Gao W, Alexander N, Schönfeld S et al. Reply to: Linking Hair Cortisol Levels to Phenotypic Heterogeneity of Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms in Highly Traumatized Chinese Women. Biological Psychiatry. 2015.

  10. Iob E, Kirschbaum C, Steptoe A.  Persistent depressive symptoms, HPA-axis hyperactivity, and inflammation: the role of cognitive-affective and somatic symptoms. Mol Psychiatry. 2020;25(5):1130-1140.

Foto: Nationale Akademie der Wissenschaften - Leopoldina

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0341 - 97 24539