Full Name
Steven Zottoli

Adjunct Senior Scientist

Contact Information
Ph.D., Zoology, University of Massachusetts, 1976
B.A., Biology, Bowdoin College, 1969
MBL Affiliation
Research Area
Research Area

Steve Zottoli is a neuroscientist whose interests focus on the neuronal basis of behavior.  He uses comparative approaches to reveal the function of large supramedullary neurons found in fishes. These cells were described over 150 years ago and their function still eludes scientists. Zottoli is also interested in regeneration of the central nervous system and utilizes a pair of large neurons, the Mauthner cells, found in fish, lamprey and amphibians to study the recovery of startle behavior after spinal cord injury. 

Zottoli has published on women in science who have conducted research at the MBL. 

Recently Zottoli has developed a MBL-sponsored outreach for middle/high school and undergraduate students and their teachers.  The initiative focuses on the migration of striped bass as an ideal way to connect the life cycle of an animal and the importance of the environment to these patterns.  Such an approach leads to questions, many of which are untested, concerning how an ecosystem changes as a result of seasonal migration, overfishing, pollution and climate change.  He is collaborating with Scott Bennett at the MRC and Brian Prendergast at the University of Chicago on striped bass research. More information can be found at:  https://stripedbassmagic.org/

Steven Zottoli works with
Brian Prendergrast
Brian Prendergast
Professor of Psychology
University of Chicago
Selected Publications

Zottoli, S.J., Wong, T.W., Agostini, M.A., and Meyers, J.R. (2011). Axon cap morphology of the sea robin (Prionotus carolinus): Mauthner cell is correlated with the presence of “signature” field potentials and a C-type startle response. J. Comp. Neurol. 519: 1979-1998.

Gilland E., Straka, H., Wong, T.W., Baker, R., and Zottoli, S.J., (2014). A hindbrain segmental scaffold specifying neuronal location in adult goldfish, Carassius auratus. J. Comp. Neurol. 522: 2446-2464.

Zottoli, S.J. and Seyfarth E.-A. (2015). The Marine Biological Laboratory (Woods Hole) and the scientific advancement of women in the early 20th century: The example of Mary Jane Hogue (1883-1962). J. Hist. Biol. 48: 137-167.

Sánchez-García, M.A., Zottoli, S.J., and Roberson, L.M. (2019). Hypoxia has a lasting effect on fast-startle behavior of the tropical fish Haemulon plumieri. Biol. Bull. 237: 48-62.

Koganti, L., Liu, J.,DeMajewski, A., Agostini, M.A., Wong, T.W., Faber, D.S., and Zottoli, S.J. (2020). Invasion of microglia/macrophages and granulocytes into the Mauthner axon myelin sheath following spinal cord injury of the adult goldfish, Carassius auratus.  J. Morphol. 281: 135-152. 

Zottoli, S.J., Faber, D.S., Dannhauer, A.C., Hering, J, and Northen, S. (2021). Survival and axonal outgrowth of the Mauthner cell following spinal cord crush does not drive post-injury startle responses.  Front. Cell Dev. Biol., 19 https://doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2021.744191