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The team of scientists, led by Dr Suresh Jesuthasan from the A*STAR/Duke-NUS NRP, showed that disrupting a specific set of neurons in the habenula prevents normal response to stressful situations. In their experiments, Dr Jesuthasan's team trained larval zebrafish to swim away from a light in order to avoid a mild electric shock. While normal fish easily learned this task, fish that had a specific set of neurons in the habenula damaged displayed signs of "helplessness."