Sensory information from the aquatic environment is required for life and survival of zebrafish. Changes in the environment are detected by specialized sensory cells that convert different types of stimuli into electric energy, thus originating an organ-specific transduction. Ion channels are at the basis of each sensory modality and are responsible or are required for detecting thermal, chemical, or mechanical stimuli but also for more complex sensory processes as hearing, olfaction, taste, or vision. The capacity of the sensory cells to preferentially detect a specific stimulus is the result of a characteristic combination of different ion channels. This chapter summarizes the current knowledge about the occurrence and localization of ion channels in sensory organs of zebrafish belonging to the superfamilies of transient-receptor potential and acid-sensing ion channels that are involved in different qualities of sensibility superfamilies in the sensory organs of zebrafish. This animal model is currently used to study some human pathologies in which ion channels are involved. Furthermore, zebrafish is regarded as an ideal model to study in vivo the transient-receptor potential ion channels.
Part of the book: Recent Advances in Zebrafish Researches