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RG Vida: Interneurone

Our group's main aim is to understand how information is processed and stored in the brain. We focus on how inhibition and inhibitory interneurons contribute to these processes. Although low in number (~10% in cortical neuronal populations) interneurons are highly diverse and can be subdivided into a several distinct types.

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RG Vida

Although low in number (~10% of the population), interneurons are highly diverse and can be subdivided into several distinct types. The various types are active and produce inhibition at different times and locations in the network and can regulate when and where information can flow in neuronal circuits - in a similar manner as traffic lights coordinate traffic on streets.

Our working hypothesis is, thus, that inhibitory interneurons coordinate neuronal activity and their diversity subserves a complex division of labor among the different types in networks of the brain.

A major mechanism of neuronal coordination is the generation of oscillatory activity. Oscillations ('brain waves') can be observed in the EEG and are thought to structure network activity. They provide rhythmically alternating temporal windows when neuronal discharge is high and low and thereby serve as timing signals.

We focus on the hippocampus, as this brain area is essential for learning and memory as well as spatial navigation; it is often affected in brain disorders (e.g. epilepsy, Alzheimer disease) and, last but not least, with its relatively simple laminated structure, it lends itself for experimental investigation.

Our experimental approach involves in vitro electrophysiological techniques, morphological and immunocytochemical analysis, and computational modeling.


  • Dr. Marlene Bartos, Institute of Physiology, University of Freiburg
  • Prof. Bernhard Bettler, Institute of Physiology, University of Basel
  • Dr. Stuart Cobb, Neurosciences and Clinical Psychology, University of Glasgow
  • Prof. Tengis Gloveli, Cellular and Network Physiology, Charité Berlin
  • Dr. Akos Kulik, Institute of Physiology, University of Freiburg
  • Prof. Dr. Dietmar Schmitz, NeuroCure, Charité Berlin
  • Prof. Peer Wulff, Institute of Medical Sciences, University of Aberdeen

Current Third-party Funding


Research Unit: Interneuron Synaptic Plasticity - from Mechanism to Function (FOR 2143)


GABAB receptor-mediated regulation of synaptic plasticity in interneurons (VI 353/1-1) Duration: Dezember 2017