Academic Positions

Nicholas Kurti Junior Research Fellow in Neuroscience; Postdoctoral Neuroscientist, Department of Pharmacology.


Ing. Dipl. (Sapientia Hungarian University of Transylvania), MSc (University of Oxford), DPhil (University of Oxford)

Academic Background and Previous Positions

I graduated from Sapientia Hungarian University of Transylvania (Romania) in 2009 with Ing. Dipl. in Computer Engineering. During my final year of engineering studies, I joined the group of Prof Peter Somogyi (University of Oxford) as a visiting undergraduate, where I developed quantitative, electron microscopy-constrained methods for anatomical analysis of hippocampal interneuron types. In 2010, I completed a MSc in Neuroscience at the University of Oxford, which included two research projects in the Oxford Auditory Neuroscience Group, Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, and in the Anatomical Neuropharmacology Unit, Department of Pharmacology, respectively. I then enrolled for a DPhil, under the joint supervision of Prof Peter Somogyi (University of Oxford) and Prof Thomas Klausberger (Medical University of Vienna, Associate Unit Member) testing the hypothesis that differences in connectivity and molecular composition across different hippocampal interneuron types reflect the specialisation in their functions during movement and slow-wave sleep. I was awarded a DPhil degree in 2014, having documented my observations in the doctoral thesis, entitled “The role of cell-type selective synaptic connections in rhythmic neuronal network activity in the hippocampus”. I am currently a Postdoctoral Neuroscientist in the group of Prof Peter Somogyi in the Department of Pharmacology investigating mechanisms of rhythmic brain activity and its roles in learning and memory formation.

Research Interests

My research focuses on understanding the mechanisms underlying rhythmic brain activity and its roles in learning and spatial memory and defining key modifications that result in mental disorders. Together with my colleagues, we are exploring how distinct types of neuron in the memory system contribute to normal and aberrant brain function. The results should lead to the identification of sites and development of precise methods for targeted therapeutic intervention for ameliorating abnormal neuronal coordination like observed in neurological and psychiatric disorders and restoring normal activity patterns.


Katona, L., Micklem, B., Borhegyi, Z., Swiejkowski, D.A., Valenti, O., Viney, T.J., Kotzadimitriou, D., Klausberger, T., and Somogyi, P. (2017). Behavior-dependent activity patterns of GABAergic long-range projecting neurons in the rat hippocampus. Hippocampus 27, 359-377, doi:10.1002/hipo.22696.

Katona, L., Lapray, D., Viney, T.J., Oulhaj, A., Borhegyi, Z., Micklem, B.R., Klausberger, T., and Somogyi, P. (2014). Sleep and movement differentiates actions of two types of somatostatin-expressing GABAergic interneuron in rat hippocampus. Neuron 82, 872-886, doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2014.04.007.

Katona, L.*, Viney, T.J.*, Lasztoczi, B.*, Crump, M.G.*, Tukker, J.J., Klausberger, T., and Somogyi, P. (2013). Network state-dependent inhibition of identified hippocampal CA3 axo-axonic cells in vivo. Nature Neuroscience 16, 1802-0811, doi:10.1038/nn.3550.
        *each of the first four authors made important—though different—contributions, and hence they should be considered equal first authors (order on  publication: TJV, BL, LK, MGC)

Tukker, J.J., Lasztóczi, B., Katona, L., Roberts, J.D.B., Pissadaki, E.K., Dalezios, Y., Márton, L., Zhang, L., Klausberger, T., and Somogyi, P. (2013). Distinct dendritic arborization and in vivo firing patterns of parvalbumin-expressing basket cells in the hippocampal area CA3. The Journal of Neuroscience 33, 6809-6825, doi:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5052-12.2013.

Lapray, D., Lasztoczi, B., Lagler, M., Viney, T.J., Katona, L., Valenti, O., Hartwich, K., Borhegyi, Z., Somogyi, P., and Klausberger, T. (2012). Behavior-dependent specialization of identified hippocampal interneurons. Nature Neuroscience 15, 1265-1271, doi:10.1038/nn.3176.


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