Dr M.S. Oitzl (b. 1955) has been appointed professor by special appointment (bijzonder hoogleraar) of Cognitive Neurobiology at the Faculty of Science of the Universiteit van Amsterdam (UvA) as from 1 January 2006. The chair has been endowed by Stichting Bèta Plus (Science foundation).
Melly Oitzl’s research interests are in the fields of neurobiology, endocrinology and psychopharmacology of the brain and of behaviour. She focuses in particular on the functioning of stress systems in emotions, learning abilities and behaviour. Oitzl researches the influence of life events (postnatal, acute and chronic stress) in rats and mice by combining behavioural analysis with endocrine, biochemical and molecular methods. Oitzl received an NWO subsidy in 2002 together with Dr H.J. Krugers of the Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences for their project Stress hormone effects on cognitive performance. She received an Aspasia subsidy from NWO in the same year for her research on animal models for the pathogenesis of stress-related diseases.
Oitzl has been attached to the department of Medical Pharmacology of the Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum (LUMC – Leiden University Medical Centre) and the Leiden/ Amsterdam Centre for Drug Research (LACDR) as senior university lecturer since 2002. Furthermore she is a member of the board of the European Brain and Behaviour Society (EBBS), and she is a member of the editorial board of the academic journals Behavioural Brain Research and Physiology & Behavior.