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Fish in Behaviour Research: Unique Tools with a Great Promise!

Date:  Friday August 31
Time:  10:00-12:30
Location:  42
Chair:  Robert Gerlai (University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, Canada)

Zebrafish are becoming increasingly popular in behavioural brain research as this species  offers good translational relevance and has several genetic and biological techniques  developed for it. Other species of fish may also have utility in behavioural research as  their analysis can not only shed light on interesting species-specific characteristics but  also allow the investigator to examine complex behavioural phenomena in a simpler,  evolutionarily older “design”, and thus make conclusions about how our own behaviour  may have evolved.  The current symposium will have five speakers. Dr. Gerlach will talk  about olfactory imprinting in coral reef fish and zebrafish and will discuss both the  ecological and neurobiological aspect of her research. Dr. Agrillo will review findings on  numerical abilities in fish presenting data obtained with the use of behavioural paradigms  developed for fish species. These paradigms include spontaneous choice tasks as well as  operant conditioning methods. Ms. Buske will describe how social behavior develops in  zebrafish and how dynamic changes in shoaling may be quantified using video-tracking  systems. Dr. Cretton will present his novel hardware and software solutions as to how  to quantify larval zebrafish behavior including anxiety-like responses. Dr. Merlin will  present his research on modeling and analyzing attention deficit hyperactivity disorders  using zebrafish. Last, Dr. Gerlai will examine social affiliation, and how one can induce  group cohesion using computer animated stimuli. He will also present data on the  neurobiological mechanisms of group cohesion in zebrafish.

10:00  Social Affiliation in Zebrafish: From Synthetic Images to Biological Mechanisms 
  Robert Gerlai
  University of Toronto Mississauga, Mississauga, Canada.

10:20  Diving Deeper into Zebrafish Development of Social Behavior: Analyzing High Resolution Data
  Christine Buske, and Robert Gerlai
  University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.

10:40  Coffee break

11:10  Zebrafish Assays to Measure ADHD Endophenotypes 
  M. Lange (1), W.H.J. Norton (1), M. Chaminade (1), P. Vernier (2), K.P. Lesch (3), and  L. Bally-Cuif (1)
  1 Zebrafish Neurogenetics, Neurobiology & Development, INAF, CNRS UPR3294, 
  2 “Development and Evolution of Neurotransmission”, Neurobiology and 
  Development, CNRS UPR 3294, France.
  3 University of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany.

11:30  Automated Analyses of Behavior in Zebrafish Larvae 
  Sean D. Pelkowski, Holly A. Richendrfer, Ruth M. Colwill, and Robbert Creton
  Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA.

11:50  Fish as a Model to Study Non-verbal Numerical Abilities
  Christian Agrillo, Maria Elena Miletto Petrazzini, Laura Piffer, Marco Dadda, and
  Angelo Bisazza
  University of Padova, Padova, Italy.

12:10  Olfactory Signals Involved in Kin Recognition in Zebrafish.
  Gabriele Gerlach 1 , and Cornelia Hinz 2 
  Carl von Ossietzky University, Oldenburg, Germany.

12:30  End of session