It has been centuries since humans consume coffee and get the benefits of this bean. Many researches worldwide continue to show healthful properties of coffee, while others suggest a number of side effects. In fact, anything consumed in excess may cause disturbance of the body functioning, whereas caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that increases focus and improves performance, its high concentration can cause insomnia, dizziness, and vomiting. Thus, the question is: which coffee dose promotes benefits and prevents risks? To answer it, we used the zebrafish, a popular animal model that is at the vanguard of psychopharmacological research due to its unique combination of complexity and simplicity, translational relevance and applicability to high throughput behavioral drug screens. In the current study, we examine time-course and dose-dependent changes in zebrafish following exposure to caffeine. Our data show an inverted U-shaped path for the locomotor parameters and crescent path for the anxiety-like parameters. High doses are harmful to the individual, because the stimulating effect disappears and anxiogenic effects take place. We conclude that temporal analysis of zebrafish behavior is a sensitive method for the study of acute caffeine exposure–induced functional changes in the vertebrate brain.
Part of the book: The Question of Caffeine