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Behav Res Methods. 2006 Aug;38(3):456-69.

Behavioral phenotyping in zebrafish: comparison of three behavioral quantification methods.

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  • 1University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.


The zebrafish has been popular in developmental biology and genetics, but its brain function has rarely been studied. High-throughput screening of mutation or drug-induced changes in brain function requires simple and automatable behavioral tests. This article compares three behavioral quantification methods in four simple behavioral paradigms that test a range of characteristics of adult zebrafish, including novelty-induced responses, social behavior, aggression, and predator-model-induced responses. Two quantification methods, manual recording and computerized videotracking of location and activity, yielded very similar results, suggesting that automated videotracking reliably measures activity parameters and will allow high-throughput screening. However, observation-based event recording of posture patterns was found generally not to correlate with videotracking measures, suggesting that further refinement of automated behavior quantification may be considered.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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