Kubo Group • Systems Neuroscience Laboratory

Neural circuit mechanisms for visual processing and behavior in zebrafish


Research Summary

Animals generate a range of behaviors depending on visual information that they receive from their outside world. Using zebrafish as a model, our lab studies the neural circuit mechanisms by which visual inputs produce goal-directed behavioral outputs. In particular, we aim to understand the roles of genetically defined neuron types and their circuit connectivity underlying the visually guided behaviors. The approaches that our lab uses include behavioral, genetic and optical techniques, as well as quantitative data analyses.

(A) A larval zebrafish at 5 days post fertilization. Arrows indicate visual motion stimuli presented to the zebrafish. (B) Calcium imaging and quantitative analysis reveal the activity pattern of multiple neuron types in a brain region (e.g. pretectum) involved in the visual processing. (C) Predicted wiring diagram of the whole-field motion processing circuit in the pretectum.


Förster D, Arnold-Ammer I, Laurell E, Barker AJ, Fernandes AM, Finger-Baier K, Filosa A, Helmbrecht TO, Kölsch Y, Kühn E, Robles E, Slanchev K, Thiele TR, Baier H, Kubo F (2017)
Genetic targeting and anatomical registration of neuronal populations in the zebrafish brain with a new set of BAC transgenic tools. Scientific reports 7, 5230.

Hoffman, E. J., Turner, K. J., Fernandez, J. M., Cifuentes, D., Ghosh, M., Ijaz, S., Jain, R. A., Kubo, F., Bill, B. R., Baier, H., Granato, M., Barresi, M. J., Wilson, S. W., Rihel, J., State, M. W., and Giraldez, A. J. (2016). Estrogens suppress a behavioral phenotype in zebrafish mutants of the autism risk gene, CNTNAP2. Neuron 89, 725-733.

Kubo F, Hablitzel B, Dal Maschio M, Driever W, Baier H, Arrenberg AB (2014)
Functional architecture of an optic flow-responsive area that drives horizontal eye movements in zebrafish. Neuron 81, 1344-1359.

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