Date of Submission

Spring 2017

Academic Programs and Concentrations


Project Advisor 1

Arseny Khakhalin

Abstract/Artist's Statement

The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) Fluoxetine, commonly known as Prozac, is the most widely used class of antidepressants in the U. S. Although a great deal of research has been done since the discovery of the SSRI antidepressant, the physiological and behavioral side effects of Fluoxetine such as weight loss and increased anxiety are not fully understood. The Xenopus laevis tadpole provides many advantages as an animal model for studying human neurodevelopmental disorders and behaviors. While research has demonstrated how fluoxetine affects development in tadpoles, studies have yet to explore how fluoxetine alters behavior in the X. laevis model. In this study I proposed a novel approach for exploring how Fluoxetine affects feeding behavior in the X. laevis tadpole, and I assessed the efficacy of using the X. laevis as a model for studying the disputable side effects associated SSRI treatment, such as weight loss. I treated wild-type tadpoles with a low, medium, and high concentration of fluoxetine and observed their behavior in a feeding assay developed in this study. I found that fluoxetine diminished preference for food in hungry X. laevis tadpoles. The data presented in this study provides evidence that is consistent with studies that suggest fluoxetine causes a decrease in appetite and weight loss in patients.

Open Access Agreement

On-Campus only

Creative Commons License

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