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Balint Lasztoczi
Balint Lasztoczi

Center for Brain Research (Division of Cognitive Neurobiology)
Position: Associate Professor

ORCID: 0000-0002-2021-4503
T +43 1 40160 34167


Hippocampus; Interneurons; Neural Inhibition; Pyramidal Cells

Research interests

I’m an experimental neuroscientist. My interest is primarily in understanding how the architecture and the activity of neuronal circuits support the regulation of animal behaviour, and in deciphering the contribution of individual cell types and connectivity motifs to circuit operations in neuronal networks. In our experiments we record neuronal network oscillations as a readout of collective neuronal dynamics that reflect both local and long-range coordination of neuronal populations, which is a key process in cognition. We analyse the spike timing of individual neurons in the context of such collective dynamics to understand circuit operations, and explore correlations of cellular and population activities with animal behaviour. To gain insight into the network architecture underlying the recorded phenomena, we histologically identify some of the recorded cells and analyse the local and long-range connectivity of neuronal populations involved. As a model system we chose the CA1 area of the rodent hippocampus, featuring a simple wiring diagram with anatomically segregated inputs, a well described system of separable neuronal oscillations that correlate with the animal’s behavioural state, a set of diverse GABAergic inhibitory cells with an established classification scheme, and strong involvement in higher cognitive functions, such as navigation and memory.

Techniques, methods & infrastructure

1. Recording and analysing behaviour of rodents performing tasks that engage the circuitry of the hippocampus and/or the prefrontal cortical areas. Task are designed in real or virtual environments for head-fixed or freely moving rodents (mice and rats).

2. Electrophysiological recordings of intracranial local field potentials (LFP) in head-fixed and freely moving rodents. Analysisng oscillations using current source density analysis (CSD) and various signal decomposition methods (including wavelets).

3. High density recordings of spiking activity from extended and distributed neuronal populations in several brain areas in head-fixed and freely moving rodents. Analysis of anatomical and functional connectivity between brain areas using in vivo opto-tagging and viral tracing. Recording and identification of individual cells head-fixed and freely moving rodents using juxtacellular recordings, neurobiotin labelling and post hoc histological analysis.

4. Fast optogenetic manipulation (excitation or inhibition) of neuronal populations defined on the basis of their genetic expression profiles or connectivity using viral expression vectors in head-fixed and freely moving rodents. Analysis of consequent changes in behaviour and circuit operations.


  • Hippocampale Netzwerke für verschiedene Gamma Schwingungen Projektnummer (P29744) (2017)
    Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Einzelprojekte
    Principal Investigator

Selected publications

  1. Sakalar, E., Klausberger, T. and Lasztóczi, B. (2022) ‘Neurogliaform cells dynamically decouple neuronal synchrony between brain areas’, Science, 377(6603), pp. 324–328. Available at:
  2. Lasztóczi, B. and Klausberger, T. (2016) ‘Hippocampal Place Cells Couple to Three Different Gamma Oscillations during Place Field Traversal’, Neuron, 91(1), pp. 34–40. Available at:
  3. Lasztóczi, B. and Klausberger, T. (2014) ‘Layer-Specific GABAergic Control of Distinct Gamma Oscillations in the CA1 Hippocampus’, Neuron, 81(5), pp. 1126–1139. Available at:
  4. Viney, T.J. et al. (2013) ‘Network state-dependent inhibition of identified hippocampal CA3 axo-axonic cells in vivo’, Nature Neuroscience, 16(12), pp. 1802–1811. Available at:
  5. Lasztoczi, B. et al. (2011) ‘Terminal Field and Firing Selectivity of Cholecystokinin-Expressing Interneurons in the Hippocampal CA3 Area’, Journal of Neuroscience, 31(49), pp. 18073–18093. Available at: