Modeling sleep and neuropsychiatric disorders in zebrafish

Talia Levitas-Djerbi, Lior Appelbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


What are the molecular and cellular mechanisms that link neurological disorders and sleep disturbances? The transparent zebrafish model could bridge this gap in knowledge due to its unique genetic and imaging toolbox, and amenability to high-throughput screening. Sleep is well-characterized in zebrafish and key regulators of the sleep/wake cycle are conserved, including melatonin and hypocretin/orexin (Hcrt), whereas novel sleep regulating proteins are continually being identified, such as Kcnh4a, Neuromedin U, and QRFP. Sleep deficiencies have been observed in various zebrafish models for genetic neuropsychiatric disorders, ranging from psychomotor retardation and autism to anxiety disorders. Understanding the link between neuropsychiatric disorders and sleep phenotypes in zebrafish may ultimately provide a platform for identifying therapeutic targets for clinical trials in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-93
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Opinion in Neurobiology
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd


This work was supported by the Israel Science Foundation (Grant no. 690/15), the Legacy Heritage Biomedical Program of the Israel Science Foundation (Grant no. 992/14) and by the US-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF, grant no. 2011335). We thank Kira Goldring for assistance in editing the manuscript.

FundersFunder number
US-Israel Binational Science Foundation
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2011335
Israel Science Foundation690/15, 992/14


    Dive into the research topics of 'Modeling sleep and neuropsychiatric disorders in zebrafish'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this