Assessing the Role of GAP-43 in Learning using Zebrafish in a Conditioned Place Preference Assay



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The use of zebrafish in behavioral studies is becoming increasingly popular due to our extensive knowledge of the zebrafish genome which offers the possibility of studying the genetic basis of behavior I developed a spatial learning assay to investigate the involvement of the protein GAP-43 in learning Wild-type and transgenic fish were trained in a conditioned place preference task The transgenic fish carried a heat shock inducible mutation which caused overexpression of GAP 43 Since the overexpression of GAP 43 has been shown to enhance learning ability in rodents these heat shocked transgenic fish were expected to learn the task more rapidly than their wild type counterparts However the stress caused by the heat shock procedure overpowered the effects that GAP 43 may have had on learning Suggestions are made to decrease variability among experimental groups and thereby increase sensitivity of the assay in future replications of the experiment



zebrafish, conditioned place preference, learning, heat shock, GAP-43