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I studied Biology and Cognitive Neurosciences in Cuba. Subsequently I moved to Germany to complete a PhD in natural sciences, and graduated summa cum laude in 2014 from the Goethe University of Frankfurt am Main. Since 2015, I work as independent research group leader (AC lab). In 2023, I was awarded a Heisenberg fellowship from the German research council. 

My research takes a comparative approach to study the neural circuits underlying vocalization and hearing. My animal model of choice are bats. Bats provide a solid theoretical framework for studying vocalization circuits since these animals rely on sounds for natural social communication and navigation. Research in my group provides novel insights into the neuroethology of bats and has translational potential, as I study brain circuits for acoustic communication that are, by hypothesis, very similar to parallel structures that underlie human speech.


  • Context dependent procesing in the bat auditory cortex

  • Brain rhythms for vocalization and hearing


  • Acoustic properties of distress vocalizations in bats, rats, humans

  • Processing of screams in the human brain


  1. Lopez-Jury- L, Rosales FG, Palomares EG, Wetekam J, & Hechavarria JC. 2022. A neuron model with unbalanced synaptic weights explains asymmetric effects of ketamine in auditory cortex. bioRxiv doi: Article Accepted in PLoS Biology. 

  2. García-Rosales F, López-Jury L, González-Palomares E, Wetekam J, Cabral-Calderín Y, Kiai A, ... & Hechavarría JC. 2022. Echolocation-related reversal of information flow in a cortical vocalization network. Nature Communications, 13(1), 1-15.

  3. Lopez-Jury L, Garcia-Rosales F, Gonzalez-Palomares E., Kössl M, Hechavarria JC. 2021. Acoustic context modulates natural sound discrimination in auditory cortex through frequency specific adaptation. Journal of Neuroscience. JN-RM-0873-21; DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0873-21.2021

  4. Hechavarría, J. C., Beetz, M. J., García-Rosales, F., & Kössl, M. 2020. Bats distress vocalizations carry fast amplitude modulations that could represent an acoustic correlate of roughnessScientific Reports, 10(1), 1-20

  5. Weineck K., García-Rosales F., and Hechavarría JC. 2019. "Fronto-striatal oscillations predict vocal output in bats. PLOS Biology 18(3): e3000658.

  6. López‐Jury L, Mannel A, García‐Rosales F, & Hechavarria JC. 2019. Modified synaptic dynamics predict neural activity patterns in an auditory field within the frontal cortex. European Journal of Neuroscience.

  7. García-Rosales F, Röhrig D, Weineck K, Röhm M, Lin Y H, Cabral-Calderin Y, Kössl M, Hechavarria JC. 2019. Laminar specificity of oscillatory coherence in the auditory cortex. Brain Structure and Function, 224(8), 2907-2924.

  8. García-Rosales F, Beetz MJ, Cabral-Calderin Y, Kössl M, Hechavarria JC. 2018. Neuronal coding of multiscale temporal features in communication sequences within the bat auditory cortex. Communications Biology. 20; 1:200. doi: 10.1038/s42003-018-0205-5. eCollection 2018.

  9. Hechavarria JC, Beetz JM, Macias S, Kössl M. 2016. Vocal sequences suppress spiking in the bat auditory cortex while evoking concomitant steady-state local field potentials. Scientific reports; 6: 39226.

  10. Hechavarría JC, Macías S, Vater M, Mora EC, Kössl M. 2013. Blurry topography for precise target-distance computations in the auditory cortex of echolocating bats. Nature Communications. 4:2587, doi: 10.1038/ncomms3587.

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