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BIAL Foundation
TI:"Final report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish"
Selection Description
Type Title Begin End
DocumentFinal report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish2019

Reference code: PT/FB
Entity holding: BIAL Foundation
Location: S. Mamede do Coronado
BIAL Foundation Archive
Start date: 1994
The BIAL Foundation was created in 1994 by Laboratórios BIAL in conjunction with the Council of Rectors of Portuguese Universities. BIAL’s Foundation mission is to foster the scientific study of Man from both the physical and spiritual perspectives.
Along the years the BIAL Foundation has developed an important relationship with the scientific community, first in Portugal and after worldwide. Today it is an institution of reference which aims to stimulate new researches that may help people, promote more health and contribute to new milestones to gain access to knowledge.
Among its activities the BIAL Foundation manages the BIAL Award, created in 1984, one of the most important awards in the Health field in Europe. The BIAL Award rewards both the basic and the clinical research distinguishing works of major impact in medical research.
The BIAL Foundation also assigns Scientific Research Scholarships for the study of neurophysiological and mental health in people, arousing the interest of researchers in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.
To date the BIAL Foundation has supported 461 projects, more than 1000 researchers, with research groups in twenty-seven countries, resulting, until April 2013, in about 600 full papers, out of which 172 published in indexed international journals with an average impact factor of 3.6 and a substantial number of citations (1665).
Since 1996 the BIAL Foundation organizes the Symposia entitled "Behind and Beyond the Brain", a Forum that gathers well renowned neurosciences speakers and the BIAL Foundation Fellows which are spread around the world.
Classified as an institution of public utility, the BIAL Foundation includes among its patrons the Portuguese President, the Portuguese Universities Rectors' Council and the Portuguese Medical Association.
Accessibility: By permission

Reference code: PT/FB/BL
Entity holding: BIAL Foundation
Title: BIAL Grants
Start date: 1994
In 1994 the BIAL Foundation launched a programme of science research grants with the aim of encouraging the research into Man’s physical and mental processes, namely in fields still largely unexplored but which warrant further scientific analysis, as Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.
Since its launch, applications to the BIAL grants have been increasing. Up to now 461 projects have been supported, involving more than 1000 researchers from 27 countries.
The approved applications have benefited from grants in amounts comprised between €5,000 and €50, 000. The amount to be granted is fixed by the Scientific board according to the needs of each project.
The supported projects have originated, until April 2013, in about 600 full papers, 172 out of which were published in indexed international journals with an average impact factor of 3.6 and a substantial number of citations (1665).
Among the BIAL Foundation fellows is worth highlighting the presence of scientists from prestigious universities from the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Russia, Germany, Japan, France, Canada, and many others.
The BIAL grants are promoted biannually.

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014
Location: BF-GMS
2014 Grants
Start date: 2015-01

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014-339
Location: BF-GMS
339 - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish
Duration: 2015-05
Ana Rita Silva Martins Nunes
Institution(s): Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciencia, Oeiras (Portugal)
Contents: Contents:
Application form
Language: eng
This project is still in progress
Author: Nunes, A. R.
Number of reproductions:
Social cognition / Social dominance / Oxytocin / Biological motion / Psychophysiology

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014-339.01
Location: BF-GMS
Final report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish
Publication year: 2019
Abstract/Results: ABSTRACT:
The recognition of living organisms in the environment is an elementary social cognitive ability, critical for survival. It is well known that the human visual system can detect the presence of an individual when looking at dozen of point lights placed on the main joints of a walking person. This early evidence has stimulated researchers over the years to investigate the perceptual mechanisms underlying biological motion detection. Even simple visual displays (e.g. moving geometric shapes) can originate high-level percepts of animacy, and this ability is conserved across species (e.g. chicken, medaka fish) and critical for filial attachment, detection of predators, and perception of social dominance.
We aimed to explore the mechanisms and neuromodulators that regulate biological motion perception.
We used zebrafish (Danio rerio) as a model organism since, like humans, they rely on sensory cues, mainly visual cues, to recognize their conspecifics, in order to approach and interact with them. We used a video playback system to allow zebrafish to choose between different visual stimuli, differing in biological motion, conspecific shape or both, and quantified the time fish spent close to each stimulus as a measure of preference. Furthermore, we have used a zebrafish mutant line that exhibits oxytocin signalling impairment, to assess whether oxytocin contributes to the perception of these visual cues.
Our results demonstrated that both conspecific form and biological motion cues, either alone or together, promoted social attraction in zebrafish. Furthermore, we demonstrated an involvement of oxytocin in regulating biological motion detection.
In conclusion, our results suggest that oxytocin plays a role in basic perceptual mechanisms underlying the recognition of conspecifics.
Accessibility: Document exists in file
Nunes, A. R.
Document type:
Final report
Number of reproductions:
Nunes, A. R. (2019). Final report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish.
Indexed document: No
Keywords: Oxytocin / Perception / Biological motion / Social cognition

Final report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish

Final report - Neural mechanisms of social cognition in zebrafish