NeMUP research initiative

Neural mechanisms underlying pedophilia and sexual offending against children:
origins, assessment, and therapies

The research network NeMUP-North is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung) and primarily examines the biological mechanisms underlying pedophilia specifically and sexual offending against children generally. We assume that there are different underlying mechanisms for the two different phenomena: not every pedophile commits child sexual abuse and nor does every child sexual abuser have a pedophilic sexual preference. Over the course of this project, various neuroimaging, psychological and physiological methods will be utilized. With the specific design of the study in mind, the aim is to deepen the understanding of the differentiation between sexual preference and sexual behavior during the 3-year funding period. The results are to be applied in the development and enhancement of therapy and prevention strategies. The different sites are members of a network of leading medical and psychological research and care facilities for pedophiles as well as sexual offenders against children. The available collaboration of ambulant clinical facilities within the prevention network “Dunkelfeld” (, the penal system, and forensic commitment is a unique constellation for this project.

On this page you will find information about the structure of the network, site-specific studies, the scientific background of the running research project, and contact addresses for interested parties and subjects.



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link to  Berlin site link to Magdeburg site link to Leipzig site link to Hannover site link to Kiel site link to Essen site

For links to collaboration partners click on map