Short CV/Education and training

  • 1989 – 1991
    Public Health, University of Maastricht, graduated cum laude

  • 1990 – 1997
    School of Medicine, Free University Amsterdam, graduated cum laude

  • 1997 – 2002
    Fellowship Psychiatry, University Medical Center Utrecht (UMCU)

  • 2002 – 2006
    Psychiatry Residencies, UMCU

  • 2004
    Ph.D. cum laude

  • since 2006
    Researcher and Psychiatrist at the Neuroscience Division of the UMCU

  • 2007 – 2009
    Coordinator of the Research Focus Area: Brain, Behavior and Cognition (collaboration between the Medical Faculty, Veterinary Faculty, Social Sciences and Humanities).

  • 2008 – 2012
    Head of the research section Psychopathology of Developmental Disorders, Neuroscience Division UMCU

  • since 2009
    coordinator of OPTiMiSE, a large European RCT on first episode schizophrenia (FP7-Health-2009 European Commission)

  • 2010
    Associate professor at the Neuroscience Division of the UMCU

  • 2011
    professor of psychiatry at the University of Utrecht

  • 2012
    research head of the Affective disorder and Psychosis department

Selected publications

  • Sommer IE, Ramsey NF, Bouma A, Kahn RS: Cerebral mirror-imaging in a monozygotic twin. The Lancet. 1999 23;354(9188):1445-6. Impact factor: 30.8

  • Hoogendijk WJ, Sommer IE, Pool CW, Kamphorst W, Hofman MA, Eikelenboom P, Swaab DF. Lack of association between depression and loss of neurons in the locus coeruleus in Alzheimer disease. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1999 56(1):45-51. Impact factor:12.3

  • Sommer IE, Kahn RS. The left hemisphere as the redundant hemisphere Behavioral Brain Sciences 2003 26: 239-240. Impact factor:14.4

  • Sommer IE, Aleman A, Somers M, Boks MPM, Kahn RS: Sex differences in handedness, asymmetry of the Planum Temporale and functional language lateralization. Brain Res. 2008 24;1206:76-88. Impact factor:10.6

  • Rietkerk T, Boks MPM, Sommer IE, de Jong S, Kahn RS, Ophoff RA: Network analysis of positional candidate genes of schizophrenia highlights myelin related pathways. Mol. Psychiatry 2009 14(4):353-5. Impact factor: 10.9

  • Diederen KMJ, Neggers SFW, Daalman K, Blom JD, Kahn RS Sommer IE: Auditory verbal hallucinations are consistently preceded by deactivation of the parahippocampal gyrus American Journal of Psychiatry 2010 167(4):427-35. Impact factor:12.5

  • Diederen KMJ, Neggers SFW, Daalman K, Blom JD, Kahn RS Sommer IE: Abnormal brain activation during verbal fluency is characteristic of psychosis, not of Auditory Hallucinations

    Brain 2010 Dec;133(Pt 12):3734-44. Impact factor: 9.5


  • IE Sommer, RS Kahn (eds.): Language Lateralization and Psychosis, Cambridge University Press, 2009 ISBN-13: 9780521882842

  • Iris Sommer: Stemmen horen, Balans uitgeverij April 2011, ISBN-9789460033018

  • JD Blom and IE Sommer (eds.): Hallucinations, research and practice, Springer New York, January 2012 ISBN 978-1-4614-0958-8

Selected projects

  • NWO (Dutch Scientific Research Organization), Innovation Impulse (VENI): Language activity and connectivity in healthy subjects with hallucinations. 2005

  • NWO/ ZonMW (Dutch Scientific Research Organization) Innovation Impulse (VIDI) Where the voices come from, and how to get rid of them, 2009

  • Stanley Foundation: Prednisolone augmentation for patients with recent onset schizophrenia, 2012

  • Stanley Foundation: Simvastatin augmentation for recent onset schizophrenia, 2012

Membership in scientific bodies/juries

  • Elected member of the Young Academy of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Science (DJA van de KNAW), 2011

Ad hoc reviewer for:

  • Brain

  • Schizophrenia Research

  • Schizophrenia Bulletin

  • Archives of General Psychiatry

  • American Journal of Psychiatry

  • Journal of Clinical Psychiatry

  • Psychological Medicine

  • Human Brain Mapping

Media coverage




Additional qualifications

  • Registrated Medical Doctor, Free University Amsterdam, 1997

  • Registrated Psychiatrist, UMCU, 2006


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