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Theses

The neural substrate of goal-directed locomotion in zebrafish and whole-brain functional imaging with two-photon light-sheet microscopy

Abstract : The first part of this thesis presents an historical overview of neural recording techniques, followed by a study on the development of a new imaging method for zebrafish neural recording: two-photon light sheet microscopy. Combining the advantages of two-photon point scanning microscopy and light sheet techniques, the two-photon light sheet microscope warrants a high acquisition speed with low photodamage and allows to circumvent the main limitation of one-photon light sheet microscopy: the disturbance of the visual system. The second part of the thesis is focused on goal-directed navigation in zebrafish larvae. After an exhaustive review on chemotaxis, phototaxis and thermotaxis in various animal models, we report a study that reveals the neural computation underlying phototaxis in zebrafish. Combining virtual-reality behavioral assays, volumetric calcium recordings, optogenetic stimulation, and circuit modeling, this work shows that a self-oscillating hindbrain population called the hindbrain oscillator (HBO) acts as a pacemaker for ocular saccades, controls the orientation of successive swim-bouts during zebrafish larva navigation, and is responsive to light in a state-dependent manner such that its response to visual inputs varies with the motor context. This peculiar response to visual inputs biases the fish trajectory towards brighter regions (phototaxis). The third part provides a discussion on the neural basis of ocular saccades in vertebrates. We conclude with some recent preliminary results on heat perception in zebrafish suggesting that the same hindbrain circuit may be at play in thermotaxis as well.
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Sébastien Wolf. The neural substrate of goal-directed locomotion in zebrafish and whole-brain functional imaging with two-photon light-sheet microscopy. Physics [physics]. Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Paris VI, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017PA066468⟩. ⟨tel-01787017v2⟩

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