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Neuroimaging Group

The full lab homepage is here


 Aleksandra Domagalik-Pittner, PhD


Aleksandra Żyrkowska, MSc (Full-time delegation from Institute of Applied Psychology)

Monika Cichocka, MSc (Part-time delegation from Chair of Radiology CM JU)


The Neuroimaging Research Group is conducting the cognitive neuroscience research with the use of the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), diffusion tensor tractography (DTI), dense-array electroencephalography (dEEG), simultaneous EEG-fMRI, and eye-tracking (ET).
Studies conducted within the Research Group can be divided on two major tracks: cognitive and clinical. Within cognitive research we focus on investigating the neural indicators of error detection, conflict monitoring, learning, memory distortions, and other complex cognitive and affective processes. The neuronal indices are analyzed in relation to individual and contextual factors, such as emotional and motivational state, temperament, fatigue, sleepiness, sleep deprivation, diurnal rhythm and chronotype. The second area of research, the clinical one, includes studies of structure and function of central nervous system in neurology, psychiatric, and rear diseases patients.               


  1. The pioneering research on the diurnal patterns activations of orienting and executive attention neuronal networks in performance of conflict tasks. The study presented in the paper: ”Diurnal patterns of activity of the orienting and executive attention neuronal networks in subjects performing a Stroop-like task : A functional magnetic resonance imaging study” (Chronobiology International, 2010, 27(5): 945–958).
  2. The inhibition and vector inversion neural networks related to the anti-saccades identification. The study presented in the paper “Neural networks related to pro-saccades and anti-saccades revealed by independent component analysis” euroImage 2012, 62 1325–1333 ) .
  3. The introduction of the contributing sources analysis (CSA) in fMRI analysis. In the paper “Contributive sources analysis: A measure of neural networks' contribution to brain activations” (NeuroImage, 2013, 76, 304-312) authors proposed a new supplementary method that can give more insight into the functional data as well as help to clarify inconsistencies between the results of studies using GLM and ICA. Introduced CSA method provides a measure of the number and the strength of the neural networks that significantly contribute to brain activation.
  4. Research on differences in verbal humor processing between individuals with schizophrenia and healthy controls. Neural substrates of these humor processing alterations in people with schizophrenia were indicated by attenuated brain activations in the right posterior temporal cortices (STG, BA 41) at the time when irresolvable incongruity in nonsensical content was being processed, the left dorsomedial frontal cortex (MFG/SFG, BA 8/9) when processing resolvable & funny incongruity in funny puns, and the interhemispheric dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (ACC, BA 24) during complete humor processing. Our pioneering work on humor processing in schizophrenia suggests there are differences throughout entire humor comprehension process, which is accompanied by fronto-temporal hypoactivation. (Adamczyk, P. et al., Throughout neural circuit of verbal humor comprehension in schizophrenia - an fMRI study. OHBM2017, Vancouver )


  • Core equipment of Neuroimaging Research Group is MR scanner SIEMENS Skyra 3T equipped with 20-, 32- and 64- head coils as well as wide variety of additional devices: NNL MR Monitor is 32" HD LCD display fully compatible with MR scanner. It is perfect visual fMRI stimulus delivery device. It is compatible with nordicAktiva, E-Prime, Presentation, Matlab, and other stimulus delivery software. It can be also used during other long-lasting procedures to reduce anxiety, and provide comfort and relaxation causing less subject motions,
  • NNL visual stimulation googles for fMRI with the EyeTracking camera is a system that has separate displays for each eye, allowing presentation of 3D and stereo stimuli as well as conventional 2D stimuli. EyeTracking system is designed to capture the movements of both eyes and is using built-in infra-red light source which also works in darkness,
  • Siemens headphones providing noise levels reduction and better sound reception,
  • NNL headphones designed specifically for fMRI, the superior sound quality and increased noise attenuation provide a more precise audio stimulation to the patient, 
  • NNL in-ear phones specially designed for experiments conducted with the restrictive space requirements inside the head coils,
  • Neuro Device Tactile Stimulator is displaying combination of four Braille alphabet's characters and allows to determine location of sensory areas in brain,
  • NNL response grips set consist of two grips one for each hand with two response buttons for thumb and index finger,
  • E-prime FOBRS Response pads designed to read 10 finger responses,
  • The 16 channel system for measuring physiological responses compatible with MR scanner (BrainAmp ExG MR), with Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) MR sensor, myographic sensors and 3D Acceleration Sensor MR to capture movements in 3 dimensions (Brain Products),
  • The EyeLink® 1000 Plus Oculography System which consists of a High-Speed Camera specially constructed for eye tracking and a Host PC that is dedicated to processing the camera data. System provides low spatial and temporal noise, high sampling rates (up to 2000 Hz monocular or 1000 Hz binocularly), dual-use functionality as remote eye tracker or head-supported system, usable seamlessly in MRI environments, low latency and low variability in sample availability for gaze-contingent paradigms, focal imaging technology for a wide camera field of view and easier setup.
  • The eye-tracking system being a part of the NordicNeuroLab Visual System which is fully integrated with the MR scanner. The system consists of two independent infrared cameras with a refresh rate of 85 Hz. It is built-in special goggles used during experiments in the MR scanner. The system enables recording and analyzing the eye movements (for each eye separately) and other parameters, e.g. the pupil diameter and frequency of blinking,
  • The saccadometer system compatible to MRI (Ober-Consulting Poland) – eye movement measurement system which allows the acquisition of oculographic signals in the MRI environment. The eye movement sensor is made of plastic and optical fibres, making it transparent for the MRI scanner. The visual stimulation subsystem is integrated with the sensor. The stimulus status is recorded synchronously with the eye movement data. The time-stamps at the beginning of the slice or the layer, generated by the MRI scanner, are led through the optical connection to the control unit and can be recorded along with the eye movement data, allowing the recorded eye movement signals to be related to information from the MRI scanner data with 2 ms resolution (500 Hz sampling frequency),
  • The Saccadometer Research system (Ober-Consulting Poland) which provides a possibility of individually modifying the diagnostic experiments, immediate statistical analysis of the results of an examination and their presentation in a simple form. Eye position is sampled at 1000 Hz,
  • The JAZZ-novo multisensor measurement system (Ober-Consulting Poland) which allows the acquisition of the eye movements (1000 Hz sampling frequency) together with other physiological (total haemoglobin and oxyhaemoglobin plethysmography, 500 Hz sampling frequency, 650/910 nm wavelength), and environmental signals (microphone signal, 8000 Hz sampling frequency, 12 bits sampling resolution),
  • The FaceLab 5 eyetracking system which also tracks movements of the head and other facial features including eyelids, lips and eyebrows. It is integrated with EyeWorks™ (a visual analysis tool), which generates heat-maps and provide a beeswarm analysis.
  • MRI-compatible 64-channel EEG system (Brain Products GmbH, Gilching, Germany) including SyncBox device, which creates phase synchronization between the EEG equipment and the MRI scanner clock. This results in temporal stability of the EEG acquisition in relation to the switching of the gradients during the MR acquisition, what leads to significant improvement of the recorded data quality. Continuous EEG can be recorded simultaneously during fMRI acquisition from 63 scalp and electrocardiogram (ECG) electrode with 5 kHz sampling rate (synchronization requirements).


Cognitive and clinical neuroimaging tracks project

The dual role of the blue light - an interdisciplinary study on effects of the short wavelength visible light on circadian regulation, neural aspects of cognitive and affective functioning, and on the light contribution to degeneration and pathologies of retina (MRI study)
National Science Centre project – SYMFONIA
LPI: Prof. Tadeusz Sarna, PhD DSc.; PI2: Prof. Tadeusz Marek, PhD, DSc (Neuropsychology group) ; PI3: Prof. Marian Lewandowski (Neurophysiology group) ⦁

Cognitive neuroimaging track projects

Time-of-day impact on neural mechanism of short-term memory distortions elicited by lexical and spatial interferences - fMRI study
National Science Centre project - HARMONIA
PI: Magdalena Fafrowicz, PhD
The international project is implemented in cooperation with Prof. Patricia Reuter-Lorenz, PhD (University of Michigan, USA)

Age-related differences in the neural processes underlying false working memories (fMRI study)
International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development & Jacobs Foundation Mentored Fellowship Program for Early Career Scholars
PhD project of Barbara Wachowicz MA; JU Mentor: Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc; Max Planck Mentor: Prof Ulman Lindenberger PhD, DSc.

Neural correlates of temperament dimensions in error monitoring and learning under reward and punishment conditions - dEEG and fMRI studies
National Science Centre project – SONATA BIS
PI: Justyna Mojsa-Kaja, PhD

Behavioral and neural indicators of deterministic learning dynamics
PhD project of Magdalena Gawłowska, PhD; Promotor: Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc. completed

The thin line between conflict and time on task. Exploring the nature of the medial frontal cortex activity - a simultaneous EEG-fMRI study
National Science Centre project – SONATA
PI: Ewa Beldzik, PhD (JU, Institute of Applied Psychology)
MCB coordinators: Aleksandra Domagalik-Pittner, PhD, Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc.

Space to reason - the role of visual displays and gestures in deductive reasoning (fMRI study)
National Science Centre project - HARMONIA
PI: Robert Mackiewicz PhD (University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw, Faculty of Psychology)
MCB coordinators: Magdalena Fafrowicz PhD, Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc..
The international project is implemented in cooperation with Prof Philip Nicolas Johnson-Laird PhD (Princeton University, USA)

Clinical neuroimaging track projects

Sense of humor in schizophrenia - characteristics of the neuronal basis of processes related to humor comprehension deficits in people suffering from schizophrenic psychoses (MRI study)
National Science Centre project - OPUS
PI: Przemysław Adamczyk, PhD (JU Medical College, Department of Community Psychiatry) MCB coordinators: Aleksandra Domagalik-Pittner, PhD; Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc.

Assessment of autonomic dysfunction prevalence in patients with primary systemic vasculitis (MRI study)
National Science Centre project - PRELUDIUM
PI: Anna Włudarczyk, MD (JU Medical College, Department of Medicine), Wojciech Szczeklik, PhD, DSc. (JU Medical College, Department of Medicine)​
MCB coordinators: Aleksandra Domagalik-Pittner, PhD, Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc.

Influence of training improving physical fitness on central nervous system in elderly people (MRI study)
PI: Prof. Joanna Pera, MD, PhD, DSc; co-PI: Jadwiga Kubica, MSc (JU Medical College, Department of Neurology)
MCB coordinators: Aleksandra Domagalik-Pittner, PhD Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc.

Relations in top-down processes during mental imagery of pain in fibromyalgia and depression (MRI study)
PI: Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc., (JU, Institute of Applied Psychology project); co-PI1: Marcin Gajdosz, MD; co-PI2: Łukasz Małecki, MD, co- PI3: Prof. Jerzy Wordliczek,MD, PhD, DSc (JU, Medical College) (starting 2017)

A relationship between systemic inflammation and post-stroke depressive symptoms - factors that facilitate depressogenic effect of systemic inflammation in stroke patients (MRI study)
National Science Centre project - OPUS
PI: Prof Tomasz Dziedzic, MD, PhD, DSc (JU Medical College, Department of Neurology) MCB coordinators: Magdalena Fafrowicz PhD, Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc. (starting 2017)

Neuronal mechanisms of convergence insufficiency with unilateral exophoria at near in schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and healthy controls - fMRI, MRI and DTI study
Ministry of Science and Higher Education - Diamond Project
PI: Adrian Chrobak, MD (JU Medical College, Department of Adult Psychiatry) Mentor: Prof. Dominika Dudek, MD, PhD, DSc
MCB coordinators: Magdalena Fafrowicz, PhD, Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc. (starting 2017)

Domino Effect: the impact of motor cortex dysfunction upon higher cognitive processes in individuals with Asperger Syndrome.
PI 1: Anna Beres PhD (Institute of Applied Psychology JU), PI 2: Prof. Tadeusz Marek PhD, DSc (MCB JU), PI 3: Andrzej Dąbrowski PhD (University of Information Technology and Management, Rzeszow), MCB coordinator: Magdalena Fafrowicz PhD (starting 2017)



  • Adamczyk P., Wyczesany M., Domagalik A., Daren A., Cepuch K., Błądziński P., Cechnicki A. & Marek T. (2017). Neural circuit of verbal humor comprehension in schizophrenia-an fMRI study. NeuroImage: Clinical.
  • Mojsa-Kaja J., Beldzik E., Domagalik A., Gawlowska M., Marek T. Error-related oscillatory activity is modulated by Novelty Seeking in the reward condition. International Journal of Psychophysiology. In press.
  • Gawlowska M, Beldzik E, Domagalik A, Gagol A, Marek T and Mojsa-Kaja J (2017) I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing – Learning Dynamics and Effects of Feedback Type and Monetary Incentive in a Paired Associate Deterministic Learning Task. Front. Psychol. 8:935. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00935
  • Beldzik, E., Domagalik, A., Gawlowska, M., Marek, T., & Mojsa-Kaja, J. (2017). When three is greater than five: EEG and fMRI signatures of errors in numerical and physical comparisons. Brain structure & function.
  • Kuniecki, M., Wołoszyn, K. B., Domagalik, A., & Pilarczyk, J. (2017). Effects of Scene Properties and Emotional Valence on Brain Activations: A Fixation-Related fMRI Study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 11, 429.
  • Lewandowska K., Sikora-Wachowicz B., Oginska H., Marek T., Fafrowicz M. (2017) Would you say ‘yes’ in the evening? Time of day effect on response bias in four types of working memory recognition tasks Chronobiology International In Press


  • Gudowska-Nowak, E., Ochab, J.K., Oles, K., Beldzik, E., Chialvo, D.R., Domagalik, A., Fafrowicz, M., Marek, T., Nowak, M.A., Oginska, H., Szwed, J., Tyburczyk J. (2016) Seeking for a fingerprint: analysis of point processes in actigraphy recording. Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment (5), 054034
  • Mojsa-Kaja, J., Golonka, K., Gawłowska, M. (2016) Preliminary analyses of psychometric characteristics of the polish version of the obsessive-compulsive inventory – revised (OCI-R) in a non-clinical sample. International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health;29(6):1011 – 1021



  • Beldzik, E., Domagalik, A., Oginska, H., Marek, T., Fafrowicz M. (2015) Brain Activations Related to Saccadic Response Conflict are not Sensitive to Time on Task. Frontiers in human neuroscience, 9, 00664
  • Beldzik, E., Domagalik, A., Froncisz, W., Marek, T. (2015) Dissociating EEG sources linked to stimulus and response evaluation in numerical Stroop task using Independent Component Analysis. Clinical Neurophysiology, 126(5), 914-26
  • Wachowicz B, Beldzik E, Domagalik A, Fafrowicz M, Gawlowska M, Janik J, Lewandowska K, Oginska H, Marek T. (2015) Different types of errors in saccadic task are sensitive to either time of day or chronic sleep restriction. PLoS One, 10(5), e0126502.


  • Domagalik, A., Beldzik, E., Oginska, H., Marek, T., Fafrowicz, M. (2014) Inconvenient correlation – RT-BOLD relationship for homogeneous and fast reactions. Neuroscience, 278, 211-221
  • Ochab, J.K., Tyburczyk, J., Beldzik, E., Chialvo, D.R., Domagalik, A., Fafrowicz, M., Gudowska-Nowak, E., Marek, T., Nowak, M.A., Oginska, H., Szwed, J. (2014) Scale-free fluctuations in behavioral performance: Delineating changes in spontaneous behavior of humans with induced sleep deficiency. PLoS One , vol.9, issue 9
  • Huijbers W., Pennartz C.M.A., Beldzik E., Domagalik A., Vinck M., Hofman W.F., Cabeza R., Daselaar S.M. (2014) Respiration phase-locks to fast stimulus presentations: implications for the interpretation of "posterior midline deactivations". Human Brain Mapping, 35(9), 4932-4943.
  • Oginska, H., Mojsa‐Kaja, J., Fafrowicz, M., & Marek, T. (2014). Measuring individual vulnerability to sleep loss—the CHICa scale. Journal of sleep research. 23, 3, p. 341-348.


  • Beldzik, E., Domagalik, A., Daselaar, S., Fafrowicz, M., Froncisz, W., Oginska, H., Marek, T. (2013) Contributive sources analysis: a measure of neural networks' contribution to brain activations. NeuroImage (76) 304-312


  • Domagalik, A., Beldzik, E., Fafrowicz, M., Oginska, H., Marek, T. (2012) Neural networks related to pro-saccades and anti-saccades revealed by independent component analysis. NeuroImage (62) 1325-1333


  • Marek, T., Fafrowicz, M., Golonka, K., Mojsa-Kaja, J., Oginska, H., Tucholska, K., Urbanik, A., Beldzik, E., Domagalik, A. Diurnal patterns of activity of the orienting and executive attention neuronal networks in subjects performing a Stroop-like task: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study Chronobiology international (27)5 945-958
  • Fafrowicz, M., Oginska, H., Mojsa-Kaja, J., Marek, T., Golonka, K., Tucholska, K. Chronic sleep deficit and performance of a sustained attention task—an electrooculography study Chronobiology international, (27) 5, 934-944

Cooperation groups:

Simultaneous EEG-fMRI study, Temperament, Autyzm, and Chronopsychology
Institute of Applied Psychology JU, Krakow
Ewa Beldzik PhD
Justyna Mojsa-Kaja PhD
Magda Gawłowska PhD
Anna Bereś PhD
Halszka Oginska PhD, DSc

Aging brain, Stroke, Inflammation, MS, and AD
Clinic of Neurology JU CM, Krakow
Head: Prof. Agnieszka Slowik MD, PhD, DSc
Prof. Joanna Pera MD, PhD, DSc
Tomasz Dziedzic MD, PhD, DSc, University prof.

Schizophrenia & Depression
Department of Psychiatry JU CM, Krakow Affective Disorders
Unit Head: Prof. Dominika Dudek MD, PhD, DSc ⦁ Department of Adult Psychiatry Adrian Chrobak MD, MSc

Suicidal thoughts and attempts in patients suffering from schizophrenia 
Department of Community Psychiatry, Chair of Psychiatry JU CM, Krakow
Head: Prof. Andrzej Cechnicki MD, PhD, DSc, University prof.

Short term memory distortions
Cognitive and Affective Neuropsychology Laboratory, Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, USA
Prof. Patricia Reuter-Lorenz, PhD  

SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Warsaw
Prof. Andrzej Falkowski PhD, DSc 

Alicja Grochowska PhD, DSc, University prof.

Psychology Department, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, WI, USA
Justyna Olszewska PhD

JU, Medical College Krakow
Prof. Jerzy Wordliczek, MD, PhD, DSc
Marcin Gajdosz, MD,
Łukasz Małecki, MD,

fMRI and EEG data processing
Marian Smoluchowski Institute of Physics, JU Krakow
Prof. Ewa Gudowska-Nowak, PhD, DSc
Prof. Maciej A. Nowak, PhD, DSc
Prof. Jerzy Szwed, PhD, DSc
Katarzyna Oles PhD,
Jeremi Ochab PhD

Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences Universidad Nacional de San Martín, Argentina
Prof. Dante Chialvo, MD, PhD, DSc

fMRI graph analysis
Department of Industrial & Management Systems, Institute for Advanced Systems Engineering, University of Central Florida, Orlando, USA
Head: Prof. Waldemar Karwowski, PhD, DSc.

Chair of Ophthalmology and Ophthalmological Oncology, JU CM Krakow
Head: Prof. Bożena Romanowska-Dixon, MD, PhD, DSc

Military Institute of Medicine, Warsaw Ophthalmology Clinic
Head: Prof. Marek Rekas MD, PhD, DSc

5th Military Hospital in Krakow
Ophthalmology Clinic
Head: Piotr Chaniecki MD

MRI spectroscopy data processing 
Chair of Radiology CM JU, Krakow
Head: Prof. Andrzej Urbanik MD, PhD, DSc
Monika Cichocka MSc (Part time delegation to Małopolska Centre of Biotechnology)

Rear diseases
JU Medical College, Krakow 
Anna Włudarczyk, MD

Deductive reasoning
SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Warsaw
Robert Mackiewicz, PhD

Princeton University, USA
Prof. Philip Nicolas Johnson-Laird, PhD

Max Planck Institute of Biological Cybernetics, Germany
Prof. Markus Knauff, PhD