Color as an important biological variable in zebrafish models: Implications for translational neurobehavioral research

M.S. de Abreu*, A.C.V.V. Giacomini, R. Genario, B.E. dos Santos, L. Marcon, K.A. Demin, D.S. Galstyan, T. Strekalova, T.G. Amstislavskaya, A.V. Kalueff*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

5 Citations (Web of Science)


Color is an important environmental factor that in multiple ways affects human and animal behavior and physiology. Widely used in neuroscience research, various experimental (animal) models may help improve our understanding of how different colors impact brain and behavioral processes. Complementing laboratory rodents, the zebrafish (Danio rerio) is rapidly emerging as an important novel model species to explore complex neurobehavioral processes. The growing utility of zebrafish in biomedicine makes it timely to consider the role of colors in their behavioral and physiological responses. Here, we summarize mounting evidence implicating colors as a critical variable in zebrafish models and neurobehavioral traits, with a particular relevance to CNS disease modeling, genetic and pharmacological modulation, as well as environmental enrichment and animal welfare. We also discuss the growing value of zebrafish models to study color neurobiology and color-related neurobehavioral phenomics, and outline future directions of research in this field.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021


  • Animal model
  • Emotional behavior
  • Drugs
  • Cognition
  • Social phenotypes

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