Send to

Choose Destination
Nat Protoc. 2006;1(5):2448-51.

Measuring the optokinetic response of zebrafish larvae.

Author information

Department of Biochemistry, Box 357350, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98195, USA.


Our laboratory screens for visual mutants by examining larval eye movements in response to rotating illuminated stripes. This behavior, which is termed an optokinetic response (OKR), is a reflex that appears in zebrafish at the same time as the development of the visual system. The OKR can be accurately measured by 4 d post-fertilization, which is the age when larvae begin foraging for food. The OKR requires approximately 1 min per larva analyzed. After identifying fish with defective eye movements, we conduct secondary screens (such as histological analysis and electroretinography) to identify the subset of fish with disruptions in the function of the outer retina. This paper describes our protocol for the OKR. Our setup is simple to construct and the materials needed are inexpensive. This makes our system especially useful for new undergraduate and graduate students, as well as introductory science lecturers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center