Volgin, A. D., Yakovlev, O. V., Demin, K. A. et al. 2018. Understanding the role of environmental enrichment in zebrafish neurobehavioral models. Zebrafish 15(5), 425-432.
Environmental stimuli are critical in preclinical research that utilizes laboratory animals to model human brain disorders. The main goal of environmental enrichment (EE) is to provide laboratory animals with better choice of activity and greater control over social and spatial stressors. Thus, in addition to being a useful experimental tool, EE becomes an important strategy for increasing the validity and reproducibility of preclinical data. Although zebrafish (Danio rerio) is rapidly becoming a promising new organism for neuroscience research, the role of EE in zebrafish central nervous system (CNS) models remains poorly understood. Here we discuss EE in preclinical studies using zebrafish and its influence on brain physiology and behavior. Improving our understanding of EE effects in this organism may enhance zebrafish data validity and reliability. Paralleling rodent EE data, mounting evidence suggests the growing importance of EE in zebrafish neurobehavioral models.