Mouse genetic studies have identified several genes involved in cerebellar development. The mouse mutants staggerer and lurcher are functionally deficient for the retinoid-related orphan receptor alpha (ROR alpha) and glutamate receptor delta2 (Grid2) genes, respectively, and they show similar functional and developmental abnormalities in the cerebellum. Here, we report the cloning and expression pattern of zebrafish ROR alpha orthologues rora1 and rora2, and compare their expression pattern with that of grid2. Expression of rora1 and rora2 is initiated at late gastrula and pharyngula stages, respectively. Both rora1 and rora2 are spatially expressed in the retina and tectum. Expression of rora2 was further observed in the cerebellum, as reported for mammalian ROR alpha. In the adult brain, rora2 and grid2 are coexpressed in brain regions, designated as cerebellar-like structures. These observations suggest an evolutionarily conserved function of ROR alpha orthologues in the vertebrate brain. Developmental Dynamics 236:2694–2701, 2007. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.