Noradrenaline

Noradrenaline

Key Publications

Ma P. M. (1994).
Catecholaminergic systems in the zebrafish. II. Projection pathways and pattern of termination of the locus coeruleus.
J. Comp. Neurol. 344, 256–269. doi: 10.1002/cne.903440207

Kastenhuber E., Kratochwil C. F., Ryu S., Schweitzer J., Driever W. (2010).
Genetic dissection of dopaminergic and noradrenergic contributions to catecholaminergic tracts in early larval zebrafish.
J. Comp. Neurol. 518, 439–458. doi: 10.1002/cne.22214

Histamine

Histamine

Key Publications

Kaslin J., Panula P. (2001).
Comparative anatomy of the histaminergic and other aminergic systems in zebrafish (Danio rerio).
J. Comp. Neurol. 440, 342–377. doi: 10.1002/cne.1390

Serotonin

Serotonin

Zebrafish Serotinergic System

Serotonergic schematic

A simple schematic representing a lateral view of the larval zebrafish brain at around 3dpf (anterior to the left). The approximate locations of serotonergic nuclei. The principle regions of 5HT expression are the raphe, the periventricular region of the caudal hypothalamus (Hc) the posterior tegmentum (PT), the pretectum (Pretect) and the pineal (Pin). Tect = tectum, Tel = telencephalon, OB = olfactory bulb and AC is anterior commissure Based on Lillesaar 2011

The serotonergic system describes the system of neurons in the brain that employ serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine;5HT) as a neurotransmitter.  The system has been fairly well characterised in the adult (see Lillesaar review ), there have also been many efforts to characterise the system embryo and larva.  The system is a current focus of multiple laboratories because of its clinical importance in several psychiatric (eg affective disorders) and neurological (eg migraine) pathologies.

Anatomically there are four main groups of serotonergic neurons in the brain: 1. the pretectal population, the hypothalamic and posterior tuberculum populations and the raphe populations, there are also 5HT-positive neurons in the epiphysis and area postrema.

Serotonin belongs to the tryptamine class of neurotransmitters as they are synthesised from tryptophan.  The tryptamines in turn are part of the monoaminergic class of neurotransmitters which additionally includes the catecholamines (including dopamine, synthesised from tyrosine), Histamine and other amines.

Transgenics and molecular markers

Antibodies raised against 5HT can be used in immunohistochemical interrogation of zebrafish brain preparations, examples are shown in images associated with this tutorial.  In addition to this, the Tg(pet1:GFP)(Lillesaar et al., 2012), Tg(pet1:KALTA4) and Tg(VMAT:GFP) transgenic line marks some of the populations of serotonergic neurons.

Antibodies that label serotinergic neurons

Transgenic lines that label serotinergic neurons

Key Publications

Lillesaar.
The serotonergic system in fish.
J Chem Neuroanat (2011) vol. 41 (4) pp. 294-308

Gaspar & Lillesaar.
Probing the diversity of serotonin neurons.
Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2012 Sep 5;367(1601):2382-94. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2011.0378.

Lillesaar et al.
Axonal projections originating from raphe serotonergic neurons in the developing and adult zebrafish, Danio rerio, using transgenics to visualize raphe-specific pet1 expression.
J Comp Neurol. 2009 Jan 10;512(2):158-82. doi: 10.1002/cne.21887.

Panula et al.
Modulatory neurotransmitter systems and behavior: towards zebrafish models of neurodegenerative diseases.
Zebrafish (2006) vol. 3 (2) pp. 235-47

McLean and Fetcho.
Ontogeny and innervation patterns of dopaminergic, noradrenergic, and serotonergic neurons in larval zebrafish.
J. Comp. Neurol. (2004) vol. 480 (1) pp. 38-56

Wen et al.
Visualization of monoaminergic neurons and neurotoxicity of MPTP in live transgenic zebrafish. Developmental Biology (2008) vol. 314 (1) pp. 84-92


Dopamine

Dopamine

Zebrafish dopaminergic system

Dopamine is a monoamine neurotransmitter, part of the catecholamine family of monoamines, which also includes noradrenaline and adrenaline.

Dopaminergic (DA) neurons are found throughout the forebrain in distinct clusters, each with characteristic local and/or long-range projections.   There are no DA neurons in the midbrain or hindbrain of zebrafish.  The catecholaminergic cells in the hindbrain are noradrenergic (NA) neurons located in the locus coeruleus and the medulla oblongata.  DA and NA neurons make up some of the major long-range projection systems in the vertebrate brain (Tay et al., 2011).

 In addition to its role as a neurotransmitter, dopamine also functions as a hormone released from the hypophysis (pituitary gland).  Through its neurotransmitter and hormonal functions dopamine controls a wide range of behaviours in the brain of both vertebrates and invertebrates.  These functions include cognition, voluntary movement, motivation, reward pathways, mood, attention and learning (Schweitzer et al., 2011).

  • The majority of DA neuronal clusters are located in the diencephalon of the zebrafish brain.  These diencephalic clusters have been assigned numbers DC1-DC7 based on their location along the anterior-posterior axis. 

  •  In the telencephalon there are two bilateral clusters of DA cells in the olfactory bulb (OB) and the subpallium (SP). 

  •  DA neurons are also found in the amacrine cell layer of the retina, the anterior and posterior parts of the parvocellular preoptic area and the periventricular pretectum.

This tutorial was written by Andy Simmonds. All images are modified from Kastenhuber et al., 2010. We thank Wolfgang Driever for supplying us with these beautiful images.

Key Publications

Tay T. L., Ronneberger O., Ryu S., Nitschke R., Driever W. (2011).
Comprehensive catecholaminergic projectome analysis reveals single-neuron integration of zebrafish ascending and descending dopaminergic systems.
Nat. Commun. 2:171. doi: 10.1038/ncomms1171

Kastenhuber E., Kratochwil C. F., Ryu S., Schweitzer J., Driever W. (2010).
Genetic dissection of dopaminergic and noradrenergic contributions to catecholaminergic tracts in early larval zebrafish.
J. Comp. Neurol. 518, 439–458. doi: 10.1002/cne.22214

Rink E., Wullimann M. F. (2001).
The teleostean (zebrafish) dopaminergic system ascending to the subpallium (striatum) is located in the basal diencephalon (posterior tuberculum).
Brain Res. 889, 316–330. doi: 10.1016/s0006-8993(00)03174-7

Ma P. M. (1997).
Catecholaminergic systems in the zebrafish. III. Organization and projection pattern of medullary dopaminergic and noradrenergic neurons.
J. Comp. Neurol. 381, 411–427