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Whole-brain mapping of socially isolated zebrafish reveals that lonely fish are not loners

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Cite this article as: eLife 2020;9:e55863 doi: 10.7554/eLife.55863

Abstract

The zebrafish was used to assess the impact of social isolation on behaviour and brain function. As in humans and other social species, early social deprivation reduced social preference in juvenile zebrafish. Whole-brain functional maps of anti-social isolated (lonely) fish were distinct from anti-social (loner) fish found in the normal population. These isolation-induced activity changes revealed profound disruption of neural activity in brain areas linked to social behaviour, social cue processing, and anxiety/stress. Several of the affected regions are modulated by serotonin, and we found that social preference in isolated fish could be rescued by acutely reducing serotonin levels.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Hande Tunbak

    The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, University College London, London, United Kingdom
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0003-3180-1401
  2. Mireya Cristina Vazquez-Prada

    The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, University College London, London, United Kingdom
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Thomas Michael Ryan

    The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, University College London, London, United Kingdom
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Adam Raymond Kampff

    Sainsbury Wellcome Centre, University College London, London, United Kingdom
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Elena Dreosti

    Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research, University College London, London, United Kingdom
    For correspondence
    e.dreosti@ucl.ac.uk
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-6738-7057

Funding

Wellcome (202465/Z/16/Z.)

  • Elena Dreosti

Gatsby Charitable Foundation (090843/F/09/Z)

  • Adam Raymond Kampff

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Animal experimentation: All experiments were performed according to protocols approved by local ethical committee (AWERB Bloomsbury Campus UCL) and the UK Home Office. PAE2ECA7E

Reviewing Editor

  1. Peggy Mason, University of Chicago, United States

Publication history

  1. Received: February 10, 2020
  2. Accepted: April 23, 2020
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: May 5, 2020 (version 1)

Copyright

© 2020, Tunbak et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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