Zebrafish models for translational neuroscience research: From tank to bedside

Adam Michael Stewart, Oliver Braubach, Jan Spitsbergen, Robert Gerlai, Allan V. Kalueff*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

505 Citations (Scopus)


The zebrafish (Danio rerio) is emerging as a new important species for studying mechanisms of brain function and dysfunction. Focusing on selected central nervous system (CNS) disorders (brain cancer, epilepsy, and anxiety) and using them as examples, we discuss the value of zebrafish models in translational neuroscience. We further evaluate the contribution of zebrafish to neuroimaging, circuit level, and drug discovery research. Outlining the role of zebrafish in modeling a wide range of human brain disorders, we also summarize recent applications and existing challenges in this field. Finally, we emphasize the potential of zebrafish models in behavioral phenomics and high-throughput genetic/small molecule screening, which is critical for CNS drug discovery and identifying novel candidate genes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-278
Number of pages15
JournalTrends in Neurosciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Anxiety
  • Biomarkers
  • Brain disorders
  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Zebrafish


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