Prof. Dr. Christian Cajochen

Head Centre for Chronobiology, Biologist

Prof. Christian Cajochen is heading the Centre for Chronobiology at the University of Basel. He received his PhD in natural sciences from the ETH in Zürich, Switzerland, followed by a 3-y postdoctoral stay at the Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA. His major research interests include investigative work on the influence of light on human cognition, circadian rhythms and sleep, circadian related disturbances in psychiatric disorders, and age-related changes in the circadian regulation of sleep and neurobehavioral performance. He has held a number of honours and has authored more than 200 original papers and reviews in his career.


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Manconi, M.; van der Gaag, LC.; Mangili, F.; Garbazza, C.; Riccardi, S.; Cajochen, C.; Mondini, S.; Furia, F.; Zambrelli, E.; Baiardi, S.; Giordano, A.; Rizzo, N.; Fonti, C.; Viora, E.; D'Agostino, A.; Cicolin, A.; Cirignotta, F.; study group, Life-ON

Sleep and sleep disorders during pregnancy and postpartum: The Life-ON study. Journal Article

In: Sleep Medicine, vol. 113, pp. 41-48, 2024.

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Strumberger, MA.; Häberling, I.; Emery, S.; Albermann, M.; Baumgartner, N.; Pedrett, C.; Wild, S.; Contin-Waldvogel, B.; Walitza, S.; Berger, G.; Schmeck, K.; Cajochen, C.

Inverse association between slow-wave sleep and low-grade inflammation in children and adolescents with major depressive disorder Journal Article

In: Sleep Medicine, vol. 119, pp. 103-113, 2024.

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Höhn, C.; Hahn, MA.; Gruber, G.; Pletzer, P.; Cajochen, C.; Hoedlmoser, K.

Effects of evening smartphone use on sleep and declarative memory consolidation in male adolescents and young adults Journal Article

In: Brain Commun Brain communications, vol. 6, iss. 3, pp. p.fcae173, 2024.

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Miller, S.; Cajochen, C.; A.Green,; Hanifin, J.; Huss, A.; Karipidis, K.; Loughran, S.; Oftedal, G.; O'Hagan, J.; Sliney, D. H; Croft, R.; van Rongen, E.; Cridland, N.; d'Inzeo, G.; Hirata, A.; Marino, C.; Röösli, M.; S.Watanabe,

ICNIRP Statement on Short Wavelength Light Exposure from Indoor Artificial Sources and Human Health Journal Article

In: Health Physics, 2024.

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Meyer, N.; Lok, R.; Schmidt, C.; Kyle, SD.; CA, CA. McClung; Cajochen, C.; Scheer, FAJL.; Jones, MW.; Chellappa, SL

The sleep-circadian interface: A window into mental disorders Journal Article

In: Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A., vol. 121, iss. 9, pp. e2214756121, 2024.

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Cajochen, C.; Reichert, CF.; Münch, M.; Gabel, V.; Stefani, O.; Chellappa, SL.; Schmidt, C.

Ultradian sleep cycles: Frequency, duration, and associations with individual and environmental factors-A retrospective study Journal Article

In: Sleep Health, iss. Supplement, no. 1, pp. S52-S62, 2024.

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Schöllhorn, I.; Stefani, O.; Luca, R. J; M. Spitschan,; Epple, C.; Cajochen, C.

The Impact of Pupil Constriction on the Relationship Between Melanopic EDI and Melatonin Suppression in Young Adult Males Journal Article

In: Journal of Biological Rhythms, 2024.

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Blume, C.; Cajochen, C.; Schöllhorn, I.; Slawik, H. C.; Spitschan, M.

Effects of calibrated blue–yellow changes in light on the human circadian clock Journal Article

In: Nature Human Behaviour, 2023.

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Schöllhorn, I.; Stefani, O.; Blume, C.; Cajochen, C.

Seasonal Variation in the Responsiveness of the Melanopsin System to Evening Light: Why We Should Report Season When Collecting Data in Human Sleep and Circadian Studies Journal Article

In: Clocks & Sleep, 2023.

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Schöllhorn, I; Stefani, O; Lucas, R; Spitschan, M; Slawik, H; Cajochen, C.

Melanopic irradiance defines the impact of evening display light on sleep latency, melatonin and alertness Journal Article

In: Communications Biology, iss. 6, no. 228, 2023.

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Lasauskaite, R; Richter, M; Cajochen, C.

Lighting color temperature impacts effort-related cardiovascular response to an auditory short-term memory task Journal Article

In: Journal of Environmental Psychology, 2023.

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Stampfli, J. R.; Schrader, B.; di Battista, C.; Häfliger, R.; Schälli, O.; Wichmann, G.; Zumbühl, C.; Blattner, P.; Cajochen, C.; Lazar, R.; Spitschan, M.

The Light-Dosimeter: A new device to help advance research on the non-visual responses to light Journal Article

In: Lighting Research & Technology, 2023.

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Lin, Y. -S.; Weibel, J.; Landolt, H. -P.; Santini, F.; Slawik, H.; Borgwardt, S.; Cajochen, C.; Reichert, C. F.

Brain activity during a working memory task after daily caffeine intake and caffeine withdrawal: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Journal Article

In: Scientific Reports, vol. 13, iss. 1, no. 1002, 2023.

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Münch, M.; Goldbach, R.; Zumstein, N.; Vonmoos, P.; Scartezzini, J. -L.; Wirz-Justice, A.; Cajochen, C.

Preliminary evidence that daily light exposure enhances the antibody response to influenza vaccination in patients with dementia Journal Article

In: Brain, Behavior, & Immunity - Health, vol. 26, pp. 100515, 2022.

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Altena, E.; Baglioni, C.; Sanz-Arigita, E.; Cajochen, C.; Riemann, D.

How to deal with sleep problems during heatwaves: practical recommendations from the European Insomnia Network Journal Article

In: Journal of Sleep Research, pp. e13704, 2022.

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Garbazza, C.; Hackethal, S.; Migliore, E.; D'Agostino, A.; Serrati, C.; Fanti, V.; Riccardi, S.; Baiardi, S.; Cicolin, A.; Borgwardt, S.; Mondini, S.; Cirignotta, F.; Cajochen, C.; Manconi, M.; study group, “Life-ON”

Influence of chronotype on the incidence and severity of perinatal depression in the "Life-ON" study Journal Article

In: Journal of Affective Disorders, vol. 317, pp. 245-255, 2022.

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Blume, C.; Niedernhuber, M.; Spitschan, M.; Slawik, H. C.; Meyer, M. P.; Bekinschtein, T. A.; Cajochen, C.

Melatonin suppression does not automatically alter sleepiness, vigilance, sensory processing, or sleep Journal Article

In: SLEEP, 2022.

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Garbazza, C.; Cirignotta, F.; D'Agostino, A.; Cicolin, A.; Hackethal, S.; Wirz-Justice, A.; Cajochen, C.; Manconi, M.

Sustained remission from perinatal depression after bright light therapy: a pilot randomised, placebo-controlled trial Journal Article

In: Acta Psychiatr Scand, vol. 146, pp. 350–356., 2022.

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Chellappa, S. L.; Bromundt, V.; Frey, S.; Schlote, T.; Goldblum, D.; Cajochen, C.

Cross-sectional study of intraocular cataract lens replacement, circadian rest-activity rhythms, and sleep quality in older adults Journal Article

In: Sleep, vol. 45, no. 4, pp. zsac027, 2022.

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Benedetti, M.; Maierová, L.; Cajochen, C.; Scartezzini, J. -L.; Münch, M.

Optimized office lighting advances melatonin phase and peripheral heat loss prior bedtime Journal Article

In: Scientific Reports, vol. 12, pp. 4267, 2022.

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Birchler-Pedross, A.; Frey, S.; Cajochen, C.; Chellappa, S. L.

Circadian and sleep modulation of dreaming in women with major depression Journal Article

In: Clocks & Sleep, vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 114-128, 2022.

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Cajochen, C.; Stefani, O.; Schöllhorn, I.; Lang, D.; Chellappa, S.

Influence of evening light exposure on polysomnographically assessed night-time sleep: A systematic review with meta-analysis Journal Article

In: Lighting Research & Technology, vol. 54, pp. 609-654, 2022.

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Gimenez, M.; Stefani, O.; Cajochen, C.; Lang, D.; Deuring, G.; Schlangen, L. J. M.

Predicting melatonin suppression by light in humans: unifying photoreceptor-based equivalent daylight illuminances, spectral composition, timing and duration of light exposure Journal Article

In: Journal of Pineal Research, 2022.

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Cajochen, C.; Weber, J.; Estrada, A. J.; Kobayashi, K.; Gabel, V.

Circadian and homeostatic sleep-wake regulation of secretory immunoglobulin A (sIgA): Effects of environmental light and recovery sleep Journal Article

In: Brain, Behaviour, Immunity, & Health, pp. 100394, 2021.

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Spitschan, M.; Garbazza, C.; Kohl, S.; Cajochen, C.

Sleep and circadian phenotype in people without cone-mediated vision: a case series of five CNGB3 and two CNGA3 patients Journal Article

In: Brain Communications, 2021.

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Weibel, J.; Lin, Y. -S.; Landolt, H. -P.; Berthomier, C.; Brandenwinder, M.; Kistler, J.; Rehm, S.; Rentsch, K.; Meyer, M.; Borgwardt, S.; Cajochen, C.; Reichert, C. F.

Regular caffeine intake delays REM sleep promotion and attenuates sleep quality in healthy men Journal Article

In: Journal of Biological Rhythms, 2021.

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Stefani, O.; Cajochen, C.

Should We Re-think Regulations and Standards for Lighting at Workplaces? A Practice Review on Existing Lighting Recommendations Journal Article

In: Frontiers in psychiatry, vol. 12, 2021.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX

Blume, C.; Cajochen, C.

‘SleepCycles’ package for R - A free software tool for the detection of sleep cycles from sleep staging Journal Article

In: MethodsX, 2021.

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Lin, Y. -S.; Weibel, J.; Landolt, H.; Santini, F.; Meyer, M.; Brunmair, J.; Meyer-Menches, S.; gerner, C.; Borgwardt, S.; Cajochen, C.; Reichert, C. F.

Daily Caffeine Intake Induces Concentration-Dependent Medial Temporal Plasticity in Humans: A Multimodal Double-Blind Randomized Controlled Trial Journal Article

In: Cerebral Cortex, 2021.

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Stefani, O.; Freyburger, M.; Veitz, S.; Basishvili, T.; Meyer, M.; Weibel, J.; Kobayashi, K.; Shirakawa, Y.; Cajochen, C.

Changing color and intensity of LED lighting across the day impacts on circadian melatonin rhythms and sleep in healthy men Journal Article

In: Journal of Pineal Research, vol. 70, 2020.

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Blume, C.; Schmidt, Marlene H.; Cajochen, C.

Effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on human sleep and rest-activity rhythms Journal Article

In: Current Biology, 2020.

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Eze, I. C.; Jeong, A.; Schaffner, E.; Rezwan, F. I.; Ghantous, A.; Foraster, M.; Vienneau, D.; F, F. Kronenberg; Herceg, Z.; Vineis, P.; Brink, M.; Wunderli, J. M.; Schindler, C.; Cajochen, C.; M, M. Röösli; Holloway, J. W.; Imboden, M.; Probst-Hensch, N.

Genome-Wide DNA Methylation in Peripheral Blood and Long-Term Exposure to Source-Specific Transportation Noise and Air Pollution: The SAPALDIA Study Journal Article

In: Environ Health Perspect, vol. 128, no. 6, pp. 67003, 2020.

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Hollinger, A.; von Felten, S.; Sutter, R.; Huber, J.; Tran, F.; Reinhold, S.; Abdelhamid, S.; Todorov, A.; Gebhard, C. E.; Cajochen, C.; Steiner, L. A; Siegemund, M.

Study Protocol for a Prospective Randomised Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial Investigating a Better Outcome With Melatonin Compared to Placebo Administered to Normalize Sleep-Wake Cycle and Treat Hypoactive ICU Delirium: The Basel BOMP-AID Study Journal Article

In: BMJ Open, 2020.

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Weibel, J.; Lin, Y. -S.; Landolt, H. -P.; Garbazza, C.; Kolodyazhniy, V.; Kistler, J.; Rehm, S.; Rentsch, K.; Borgwardt, S.; Cajochen, C.; Reichert, C. F.

Caffeine-dependent changes of sleep-wake regulation: Evidence foradaptation after repeated intake Journal Article

In: Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, 2020.

Abstract | Links | BibTeX

Chellappa, S. L.; Bromundt, V.; Frey, S.; Schlote, T.; Goldblum, D.; Cajochen, C.; Reichert, C. F.

Intraocular cataract lens replacement and light exposure potentially impact procedural learning in older adults Journal Article

In: 2020.

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Rudzik, F.; Thiesse, L.; Pieren, R.; Héritier, H.; Eze, I. C; Foraster, M.; Vienneau, D.; Brink, M.; Wunderli, J. M.; Probst-Hensch, N.; Röösli, M.; Fulda, S.; Cajochen, C.

Ultradian Modulation of Cortical Arousals During Sleep: Effects of Age and Exposure to Nighttime Transportation Noise Journal Article

In: Sleep, 2020.

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Spitschan, M.; Lazar, R.; Yetik, E.; Cajochen, C.

No evidence for an S cone contribution to acute neuroendocrine and alerting responses to light Journal Article

In: Current Biology, 2019.

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Spitschan, M.; Lazar, R.; Cajochen, C.

Visual and non-visual properties of filters manipulating short-wavelength light Journal Article

In: Ophthalmic Physiol Opt, 2019.

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Lasauskaite, R; Hazelhoff, E M; Cajochen, C.

Four minutes might not be enough for color temperature of light to affect subjective sleepiness, mental effort, and light ratings Journal Article

In: Lighting Research & Technology, vol. 51, iss. 7, pp. 1128–1138, 2019.

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Lasauskaite, R; Cajochen, C.

Influence of lighting color temperature on effort-related cardiac response Journal Article

In: Biological Psychology, vol. 132, pp. doi:10.1016/j.biopsycho.2017.11.005, 2018.

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Chellappa, S L; Lasauskaite, R; Cajochen, C.

In a Heartbeat: Light and Cardiovascular Physiology Journal Article

In: Frontiers in Neurology, vol. 8, pp. doi:10.3389/fneur.2017.00541, 2017.

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Gabel, V.; Reichert, C. F.; Maire, M.; Schmidt, C.; Schlangen, L. J. M.; Kolodyazhniy, V.; Garbazza, C.; Cajochen, C.; Viola, A. U.

Differential impact in young and older individuals of blue-enriched white light on circadian physiology and alertness during sustained wakefulness Journal Article

In: Scientific Reports, vol. 7, no. 7620, pp. doi:doi:10.1038/s41598-017-07060-8, 2017.

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Reichert, C. F.; Maire, M.; Gabel, V.; Viola, A. U.; Götz, T.; Scheffler, K.; Klarhöfer, M.; Berthomier, C.; Strobel, W.; Phillips, C.; Salmon, E.; Cajochen, C.; Schmidt, C.

Cognitive brain responses during circadian wake-promotion: evidence for sleep-pressure-dependent hypothalamic activations Journal Article

In: Scientific Reports, vol. 7, pp. doi:10.1038/s41598-017-05695-1, 2017.

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Reichert, C. F.; Maire, M.; Schmidt, C.; Cajochen, C.

Sleep-wake regulation and its impact on working memory performance: the role of adenosine Journal Article

In: Biology, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. E11. doi:10.3390/biology5010011., 2016.

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Garbazza, C.; Bromundt, V.; Eckert, A.; Brunner, D. P.; Meier, F.; Hackethal, S.; Cajochen, C.

Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder Revisited - A Case Study Journal Article

In: Front Neurol. 2016 Feb 29;7:17 doi: 10.3389/fneur.2016.00017, 2016.

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Schmidt, C.; Collette, F.; Reichert, C. F.; Maire, M.; Vandewalle, G.; Peigneux, P.; Cajochen, C.

Pushing the limits: chronotype and time of day modulate working memory-dependent cerebral activity Journal Article

In: Frontiers in Neurology, vol. 25, no. 6:199, pp. 1-9, 2015.

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Gabel, V.; Maire, M.; Reichert, C. F.; Chellappa, S. L.; Schmidt, C.; Hommes, V.; Cajochen, C.; Viola, A. U.

Dawn simulation light impacts on different cognitive domains under sleep restriction Journal Article

In: Behav Brain Res., doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2014.12.043, vol. 15, pp. 281: 258-266, 2015.

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Maire, M.; Reichert, C. F.; Gabel, V.; Viola, A. U.; Phillips, C.; Krebs, J.; Scheffler, K.; Klarhöfer, M.; Strobel, W.; Cajochen, C.; Schmidt, C.

Fighting Sleep at Night: Brain Correlates and Vulnerability to Sleep Loss Journal Article

In: Ann Neurol., doi: 10.1002/ana.24434., vol. 78(2), pp. 235-247, 2015.

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vanderLely, S.; Frey, S.; Garbazza, C.; Wirz-Justice, A.; Jenni, O. G.; Steiner, R.; Wolf, S.; Cajochen, C.; Bromundt, V.; Schmidt, C.

Blue blocker glasses as a countermeasure for alerting effects of evening light-emitting diode screen exposure in male teenagers Journal Article

In: J Adolesc Health, doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2014.08.002, vol. 56(1), pp. 113-119, 2015.

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Reichert, C. F.; Maire, M.; Gabel, V.; Hofstetter, M.; Viola, A. U.; Kolodyazhniy, V.; Strobel, W.; Goetz, T.; Bachmann, V.; Landolt, H. -P.; Cajochen, C.; Schmidt, C.

The Circadian Regulation of Sleep: Impact of a Functional ADA-Polymorphism and Ist Association to Working Memory Journal Article

In: PLoS ONE, vol. 9, no. 12, pp. 1-23, 2014.

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