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Episodic-like memory in zebrafish

Faculty Advisor




episodic memory, zebra danio, object recognition (computer vision), animal cognition, chacma baboon, behavior

Abstract (summary)

Episodic-like memory tests often aid in determining an animal's ability to recall the what, where, and which (context) of an event. To date, this type of memory has been demonstrated in humans, wild chacma baboons, corvids (Scrub jays), humming birds, mice, rats, Yucatan minipigs, and cuttlefish. The potential for this type of memory in zebrafish remains unexplored even though they are quickly becoming an essential model organism for the study of a variety of human cognitive and mental disorders. Here we explore the episodic-like capabilities of zebrafish ( Danio rerio) in a previously established mammalian memory paradigm. We demonstrate that when zebrafish were presented with a familiar object in a familiar context but a novel location within that context, they spend more time in the novel quadrant. Thus, zebrafish display episodic-like memory as they remember what object they saw, where they saw it (quadrant location), and on which occasion (yellow or blue walls) it was presented.

Publication Information

Hamilton, T. J., Myggland, A., Duperreault, E., May, Z., Gallup, J., Powell, R. A., Schalomon, M., & Digweed, S. M. (2016). Episodic-like memory in zebrafish. Animal Cognition. Online publication. doi:10.1007/s10071-016-1014-1


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