Skip to main content

The impact of methanol on behaviour: Dataset from zebrafish (Danio rerio) behavioural research

Cite this dataset

Hamilton, Trevor; Krook, Jeffrey; Szaszkiewicz, Joshua; Burggren, Warren (2021). The impact of methanol on behaviour: Dataset from zebrafish (Danio rerio) behavioural research [Dataset]. Dryad.


In many pharmacological and toxicological studies solvents are used as vehicles for the compound of interest.  The solvents themselves may have effects on their own, therefore, it is important to test the impact of the solvent on the preparation prior to conducting the study.  Methanol, (CH3OH), is a solvent used in many studies, and one we have used as a vehicle for benzo[a]pyrene. This data contains raw videos of zebrafish after exposure to 0, 0.25%, or 2.5% vol/vol, for 30 minutes prior to behavioral testing.  Immediately after exposure, the individual zebrafish were moved to an open field test to quantify movement and location preference and were recorded for 10 minutes.  Following the open field trial, a novel object was placed into the center of the arena to examine the exploratory response (boldness) of the fish for a second 10 minute trial.  Motion-tracking software (EthoVision XT) was used to quantify the dependent variables (distance moved, time in outer 'thigmotaxis' zone, 'inner' zone, and 'transition' zone). There were no significant differences between groups for any of the variables in either the open field or novel object approach tests.  This data suggests that 0.25% and 2.5% methanol does not alter locomotion or location preference in these two tests.


This dataset contains videos recorded from a Basler  monochrome camera that was positioned 1m above the arena and utilized a 4-8 mm F1:1.4 manual iris and focus lens (Computar). Adult wild-type zebrafish (Danio rerio) were gently netted and place into the center of the arena and recording was tested immediately. The data was analyzed using motion tracking software EthoVision XT (version 10, Noldus, VA, USA) which quanitified the time spent in the thigmotaxis, transition, and center zones, as well as the total distance travelled during the trial. The three zones were drawn and mapped onto the arena within the EthoVision XT software. 

Usage notes

These are raw video files (10 minutes each). 


Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, Award: 05426