The zebrafish as a model visual system

Int J Dev Neurosci. 2001 Nov;19(7):621-9. doi: 10.1016/s0736-5748(01)00050-8.


The zebrafish has become an important vertebrate model in developmental neuroscience because it is a useful model for embryology, developmental biology, and genetic analysis. The similarities of its visual system to that of other vertebrates also make this animal a valuable model in vision science. The anatomical, physiological, and behavioral components of zebrafish visual processing have been studied in adult and in developing zebrafish. Its retinal anatomy continues to develop following hatching, providing an opportunity to correlate the development of retinal structure with visual physiology and behavior. In addition, a number of genetic mutations have been developed which are used to examine the contributions of genetics to visual development and function. This article will provide an overview of studies of zebrafish anatomical, physiological and behavioral processing, and the effects if genetic and environmental manipulations on visual development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aging / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / growth & development
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Models, Animal*
  • Mutation / physiology*
  • Retina / cytology
  • Retina / growth & development
  • Retina / physiology*
  • Visual Pathways / cytology
  • Visual Pathways / growth & development
  • Visual Pathways / physiology*
  • Zebrafish / anatomy & histology
  • Zebrafish / growth & development
  • Zebrafish / physiology*