Neuroethology of Communication Lab

Group leader

Andics_Attila_bAttila Andics, PhD
Taking a comparative perspective, I investigate the neural mechanisms underlying social perception, and the biological and cultural origins of language in dogs, pigs and humans, combining ethological, psycholinguistic and cognitive neuroscientific methods (EEG, fMRI). 
Curriculum vitae.
Phone no: +36-1-411-6500 /Ext: 8898. E-mail:



Postdoctoral research fellows

Laura Verónica Cuaya RetanaLaura Verónica Cuaya, PhD
I want to contribute to the understanding of how the dogs’ brain represent their social world. Now, we have the unique opportunity to combine a wonderful technology with an ethical approach to ask fundamental questions about the dog brain. I believe that the comparative neuroscience will allow us to be aware of the many roads of the cerebral mechanisms of cognition. Curriculum vitae.


Marianna Boros, PhD
I am interested in the neural underpinnings of the emergence of language. As a neuroscientist I study animal interspecific communication with the use of neuroimaging methods (fMRI, EEG), focusing on mechanisms enabling human-like language processing in dogs. Curriculum vitae.



Anna Gábor, PhD
During the past few years as a PhD student, I studied social reward (verbal praise) processing in dogs from several different aspects. We investigated lexical (praising) meaning processing through two awake dog fMRI studies, later we also searched for possible individual differences in the reward response related to dogs’ impulsivity scores and their attachment towards their owner. My main interest focuses on interspecific social interactions and their neural underpinnings.
 Curriculum vitae.
Phone no: +36-1-411-6500 /Ext: 8655. E-mail:

Gerencsér Linda_nagyLinda Gerencsér, PhD, DVM
My research topic is about the comparative investigation of the interspecific communicational abilities of miniature family pigs and dogs, as well as indiviual differences in dogs’ reward responsiveness. Curriculum vitae.
Phone no: +36-1-411-6500 /Ext: 8788. E-mail:

I am currently on maternity leave.


Raul HernandezRaúl Hernández Pérez, PhD
I would like to develop analysis techniques and approaches to further improve the study of cognition and the cerebral computations through which the dog interprets the world and their social environment. I think that the comparative neuroscience is a tool that will give us an integral picture of how the cerebral networks that support the cognition emerged across the evolution. Curriculum vitae.


Lilla Magyari, PhD
I am interested in neurocognitive mechanisms underlying human language abilities, conversational turn-taking and joint actions. In the research group, I study language comprehension from a comparative perspective, applying the fully non-invasive method of electroencephalography (EEG) in experiments with dogs and minipigs. Curriculum vitae. 

I am currently on maternity leave.

Predoctoral researchers

Fanni Lehoczki
The topic of my doctoral dissertation is about family dogs’ sensitivity to conspecific, heterospecific and artificial contact calls, which allowed me to get into the methodology of behavioural research and bioacoustics. In my current research projects I am focusing on the interspecific communication features of family dogs and family pigs from a comparative perspective. Curriculum vitae


PhD students

Elodie Ferrando
My PhD research topic is about voice processing preferences in domestic mammals. More specifically I am interested to look if brain specializations for human voice may arise in domestic animals in comparison to wild relatives. To do so I combine ethology and brain imaging (EEG and fMRI) approach. Curriculum vitae.


Paula Pérez Fraga, DVM
Previously I worked in general veterinary practice for small animals and in behavior medicine field, helping owners with animals with behavior problems. My PhD research topic is the interspecific socio-communicative abilities of the family pig and family dog from a comparative ethological perspective. I am interested in the emergence of communication towards humans in family pigs and in which sense this is similar to the one in family dogs. I am also interested in behavior problems of dogs such as separation related disorder. Curriculum vitae.


Marzia Baldachini
I recently graduated at the MSc in Neuroscience at the University of Trieste and I did my internship at the Neuroethology of Communication Lab. During my thesis project I studied language processing in dog’s brain with fMRI, under the supervision of Attila Andics, Marianna Boros and Anna Gábor. Curriculum vitae.



Anett Bozsik
I am currently at my fourth year at the University of Veterinary Medicine Budapest. I have been doing scientific internship at the Neuroethology of Communication Lab for two year. The topic of my master thesis is the role of statistical learning in dog vocabulary learning using fMRI.


Lisa Touazi
I discovered ethology during my final BSc year in biology and animal physiology where I studied the animal behavior from an ecological perspective. I’m currently a student at ELTE, PPK, in the computational and cognitive neuroscience MSc program, which led me to the Neuroethology of Communication Lab where I’m doing my master thesis on dog’s knowledge of object names, using EEG (electroencephalogram) to investigate whether dogs know the referents of already learnt verbal labels. Curriculum vitae.

Dávid Török
As a research assistant and a biology student, I have participated in several electroencephalographic (EEG) studies, in which we measured, in a fully non-invasive way, the electrical brain activity of animals on the surface of their skin. The topic of my master’s thesis is the neural processes of statistical language learning in dogs. Curriculum vitae.


Main collaborators

Shany Dror
In the Neuroethology of Communication Lab I train animals for research purposes, including pigs for experiments using functional magnetic resonance imaging and for tasks involving word recognition. Curriculum vitae.




Zsófia Huszár
Adél Könczöl
Melinda Lovas
Dóra Újváry
Andrea Turzó