Belinda Pletzer

Belinda Pletzer

Full Professor

PLUS Faculty of Natural and Life Sciences

Department of Psychology


Via my master studies at the Paris-Lodron-University of Salzburg, I obtained an inter-disciplinary background comprised of biology, psychology, philosophy and mathematics. I obtained two PhDs in Philosophy and Cognitive Neuroscience, respectively, and spent my first PostDoc year at the University of California, Irvine, researching the effects of sex and sex hormones on processing strategies during cognitive tasks. After returning to Austria, I followed up on this question including brain parameters within the framework of a single investigators project funded by the Austrian Science Fund. The results were summarized in my habilitation thesis in Psychology.

Current Research Focus

My research interests comprise all aspects of hormone-brain interactions, with a particular focus on sex hormones and gender-related aspects of neuroscience. I am currently the PI of the ERC Starting Grant BECONTRA, which investigates the effects of hormonal contraceptives on the female brain.



Downscaling with benefits: A road forward for capturing intra-individual variations in personality
Anne-Kathrin Schock, Tobias Hausinger, Belinda Pletzer
Personality and Individual Differences
Effects of evening smartphone use on sleep and declarative memory consolidation in male adolescents and young adults
Christopher Höhn, Michael a Hahn, Georg Gruber, Belinda Pletzer, Christian Cajochen, Kerstin Hoedlmoser
Brain communications
Reproducible stability of verbal and spatial functions along the menstrual cycle
Belinda Pletzer, Hannah Bodenbach, Marcel Hoehn, Linda Hajdari, Tobias Hausinger, Isabel Noachtar, Adriene M. Beltz
Whole-brain dynamics across the menstrual cycle: the role of hormonal fluctuations and age in healthy women
Daniela S. Avila-Varela, Esmeralda Hidalgo-Lopez, Paulina Clara Dagnino, Irene Acero-Pousa, Elvira del Agua, Gustavo Deco, Belinda Pletzer, Anira Escrichs
npj Women's Health


Hearing loss, depression, and cognition in younger and older adult CI candidates
Maria Huber, Lisa Reuter, Lennart Weitgasser, Belinda Pletzer, Sebastian Rösch, Angelika Illg
Frontiers in Neurology
Mental Health Symptoms in Oral Contraceptive Users During Short-Term Hormone Withdrawal
Isabel A. Noachtar, Vibe G. Frokjaer, Belinda Pletzer
JAMA Network Open
Emotion recognition and mood along the menstrual cycle
Belinda Pletzer, Isabel Noachtar
Hormones and Behavior
Hormonal contraception & face processing: examining face gender, androgenicity & treatment duration
Belinda Pletzer, Isabel Noachtar, Esmeralda Hidalgo Lopez
Whole-brain dynamics and hormonal fluctuations across the menstrual cycle: The role of progesterone and age in healthy women
Daniela S. Avila-Varela, Esmeralda Hidalgo-Lopez, Paulina Clara Dagnino, Irene Acero-Pousa, Elvira del Agua, Gustavo Deco, Belinda Pletzer, Anira Escrichs
Triple network model of brain connectivity changes related to adverse mood effects in an oral contraceptive placebo-controlled trial
Esmeralda Hidalgo-Lopez, Jonas Engman, Inger Sundström Poromaa, Malin Gingnell, Belinda Pletzer
Translational Psychiatry
Towards a more comprehensive neuroscience of hormonal contraceptives
Nicole Petersen, Adriene M. Beltz, Kathleen V. Casto, Caitlin M. Taylor, Emily G Jacobs, Inger Sundström-Poromaa, Belinda Pletzer
Nature Neuroscience


Weak associations between personality and contraceptive choice
Belinda Pletzer, Carmen Lang, Birgit Derntl, Ramune Griksiene
Frontiers in Neuroscience
Duration of oral contraceptive use relates to cognitive performance and brain activation in current and past users
Isabel Asar Noachtar, Esmeralda Hidalgo Lopez, Belinda Pletzer
Frontiers in Endocrinology
Estradiol during (analogue-)trauma: Risk- or protective factor for intrusive re-experiencing?
Laila K. Franke, Stephan F. Miedl, Sarah K. Danböck, Johanna Lohse, Michael Liedlgruber, Paul-Christian Bürkner, Belinda Pletzer, Frank H. Wilhelm
Eye-Movements During Navigation in a Virtual Environment: Sex Differences and Relationship to Sex Hormones
TiAnni Harris, Johanna Hagg, Belinda Pletzer
Frontiers in Neuroscience
Sex and strategy effects on brain activation during a 3D-navigation task
Isabel Noachtar, Ti-Anni Harris, Esmeralda Hidalgo-Lopez, Belinda Pletzer
Communications Biology
Oral contraceptives modulate the relationship between resting brain activity, amygdala connectivity and emotion recognition – a resting state fMRI study
Shanice Mentin-Henry, Esmeralda Hidalgo-Lopez, Markus Aichhorn, Martin Kronbichler, Hubert Kerschbaum, Belinda Pletzer
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience


The gonadal response to social stress and its relationship to cortisol
Belinda Pletzer, Eefje S. Poppelaars, Johannes Klackl, Eva Jonas
Stress: the International Journal on Biology of Stress
Can Cochlear Implantation in Older Adults Reverse Cognitive Decline Due to Hearing Loss?
Maria Huber, Sebastian Roesch, Belinda Pletzer, Julia Lukaschyk, Anke Lesinski-Schiedat, Angelika Illg
Ear and Hearing
How Smart Is It to Go to Bed with the Phone? The Impact of Short-Wavelength Light and Affective States on Sleep and Circadian Rhythms
Sarah Rebecca Schmid, Christopher Höhn, Kathrin Bothe, Christina P. Plamberger, Monika Angerer, Belinda Pletzer, Kerstin Hoedlmoser
Clocks & Sleep
Impact of menstrual cycle phase and oral contraceptives on sleep and overnight memory consolidation
Christina Paula Plamberger, Helen Elisabeth Van Wijk, Hubert Kerschbaum, Belinda Angela Pletzer, Georg Gruber, Karin Oberascher, Martin Dresler, Michael Andreas Hahn, Kerstin Hoedlmoser
Journal of Sleep Research
Delta-beta cross-frequency coupling as an index of stress regulation during social-evaluative threat
Eefje S. Poppelaars, Johannes Klackl, Belinda Pletzer, Eva Jonas
Biological Psychology
The Missing Link: Global-Local Processing Relates to Number-Magnitude Processing in Women
Belinda Pletzer, Andrea Scheuringer, Ti Anni Harris, Thomas Scherndl
Journal of Experimental Psychology: General
Preliminary Results: The Impact of Smartphone Use and Short-Wavelength Light during the Evening on Circadian Rhythm, Sleep and Alertness
Christopher Höhn, Sarah R. Schmid, Christina P. Plamberger, Kathrin Bothe, Monika Angerer, Georg Gruber, Belinda Pletzer, Kerstin Hoedlmoser
Clocks & Sleep
Neuroimaging the menstrual cycle: A multimodal systematic review
Manon Dubol, C. Neill Epperson, Julia Sacher, Belinda Pletzer, Birgit Derntl, Rupert Lanzenberger, Inger Sundström-Poromaa, Erika Comasco
Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology