Tobias studied Psychology and Psychopathology at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. After graduating in 2010, he pursued his PhD at the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Zurich, where he studies decision making and reward processing in adolescent patients with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). In 2014, he relocated to London to work with Profs Ray Dolan and Peter Dayan. In 2018, Tobias started his own research group at the Max Planck UCL Centre for Computational Psychiatry and Ageing Research, where his research group studies how brain and cognitive development drives the emergence of psychiatric disorders during adolescence. Tobias has received several prestigious prizes in psychiatry, such as the Emerging Leaders Prize in Adolescent Mental Health (2018) and the Kramer Pollnow Award (2017). His work is supported by Wellcome, European Research Council, Royal Society, Medical Research Foundation, Jacobs Foundation, Brain & Behavior Foundation and the Max Planck Society.
Tobias’ Developmental Computational Psychiatry Group investigates how neurocognitive development can go awry and lead to mental health problems during adolescence. Tobias combines both basic computational neuroscience and patient studies to gain a deeper understanding in the computational processes that go awry in patients with psychiatric disorders. He combines multimodal neuroimaging (fMRI, MEG, brain stimulation) with computational modelling and pharmacological interventions. Using in-lab mechanistic studies as well as large crowd-sourced studies with thousands of participants (e.g. www.brainexplorer.net), Tobias’ group translates the insights mechanistic insights gained in the lab to a population scale. The work of the group primarily focuses on the mechanisms underlying decision making and learning, and how these processes are influenced by the monoamine neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, noradrenaline or serotonin.