Permanent Deafferentation Affects the Expression of Glutamate Receptor Subunits in the Adult Zebrafish Olfactory Bulb


Qi Xiong

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Christine Byrd-Jacobs

Second Advisor

Dr. John Spitsbergen

Third Advisor

Dr. Christopher Pearl


Deafferentation, olfactory bulb, glutamate receptor, neuroscience, zebrafish

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Abstract Only

Restricted to Campus until



Glutamate is recognized as the principal neurotransmitter in the vertebrate olfactory system, and it plays a role in regulating synaptic plasticity in the brain. To understand the possible mechanism by which loss of sensory input leads to changes in function of the adult zebrafish olfactory bulb, this study was aim to understand the potential role of glutamate receptors in regulating deafferentation effects in the olfactory bulb. Expression of ionotropic glutamate receptor 2/3 (iGluR2/3), metabotropic glutamate receptor 2/3 (mGluR2/3), N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor 2A/B (NMDAR2A/B) and Kainate 2 receptor (KA2R) was investigated. The afferent input was permanently removed and protein expression was examined with Western blot analysis at two time points, 1 day and 3 weeks. The expression of iGluR2/3 decreased significantly in deafferented tissues at three weeks. The expression of mGluR2/3 increased one day following deafferentation. The expression of NMDAR2A/B increased significantly at three weeks after deafferentation. No obvious change of KA2R was observed in deafferented tissues. These results indicate that olfactory input may differentially regulate the expression of various glutamate receptor subtypes in the zebrafish olfactory bulb.

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