Comprehensive catecholaminergic projectome analysis reveals single-neuron integration of zebrafish ascending and descending dopaminergic systems

Nat Commun. 2011 Jan 25:2:171. doi: 10.1038/ncomms1171.


Essential components of animal behaviour are modulated by dopaminergic (DA) and noradrenergic circuitry. In this study, we reveal at cellular resolution the complete set of projections ('projectome') of every single type of DA and noradrenergio neurons in the central nervous system of zebrafish larvae. The most extensive DA projections are established by posterior tubercular otp-dependent neurons, with individual somata integrating the ascending DA system, the descending diencephalospinal, as well as the endohypothalamic circuitry. These findings suggest a major role in the modulation of physiology and behaviour for otp-dependent DA neurons, which correlate with the mammalian A11 group. We further identified an endogenous subpallial DA system that not only provides most of the local DA projections, but also connects to the ventral diencephalon. The catecholaminergic projectome map provides a framework to understand the evolution and function of these neuromodulatory systems.