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In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (15)
- Developmental Dynamics : an Official Publication of the American Association of Anatomists
- Cellular Microbiology
- Trends in Microbiology
- Infection and Immunity
- Molecular Immunology
- Infection and Immunity
- The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal
- Developmental and Comparative Immunology
- Molecular Immunology
- The International Journal of Developmental Biology
- Disease Models & Mechanisms
- Molecular Immunology
- Disease Models & Mechanisms
- Journal of Bacteriology
- Cellular Microbiology
Articles by Astrid M. van der Sar in JoVE
Infection of Zebrafish Embryos with Intracellular Bacterial Pathogens
Erica L. Benard1, Astrid M. van der Sar2, Felix Ellett3, Graham J. Lieschke3, Herman P. Spaink1, Annemarie H. Meijer1
1Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Institute of Biology, Leiden University, 2Department of Medical Microbiology and Infection Control, VU University Medical Center, 3Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute, Monash University
Transparent zebrafish embryos have proved useful model hosts to visualize and functionally study interactions between innate immune cells and intracellular bacterial pathogens, such as Salmonella typhimurium and Mycobacterium marinum. Micro-injection of bacteria and multi-color fluorescence imaging are essential techniques involved in the application of zebrafish embryo infection models.
Other articles by Astrid M. van der Sar on PubMed
Developmental Dynamics : an Official Publication of the American Association of Anatomists. Mar, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 11836793
Receptor protein-tyrosine phosphatase alpha (RPTP alpha) is highly expressed in the developing retina of different species, but little is known about its function there. Here, we report that injection of antisense morpholinos in zebrafish embryos reduced RPTP alpha expression to almost nondetectable levels up to 3 days postfertilization (dpf). RPTP alpha was detectable again from 4 dpf onward. RPTP alpha knock-down resulted in smaller eyes. Examination of sections of the retina at different developmental stages demonstrated that already at 28 hours postfertilization (hpf) fewer cells were present in the retina of RPTP alpha-morpholino-injected embryos. At 3 dpf, the layered organization of the retina was absent. In addition, the morphology and labeling with an axon specific antibody, acetylated tubulin, demonstrated that most cells appeared to be undifferentiated. Strikingly, at 5 dpf the lamination of the retina was partially restored, concomitant with re-expression of RPTP alpha protein. Although cells in the retina were now differentiated, the layering of the retina remained disrupted and significant gaps were observed in the amacrine cell layer. Therefore, knock-down of RPTP alpha protein provides evidence that RPTP alpha is essential for normal retinal development.
Cellular Microbiology. Sep, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12925130
Bacterial virulence is best studied in animal models. However, the lack of possibilities for real time analysis and the need for laborious and invasive sample analysis limit the use of experimental animals. In the present study 28 h-old zebrafish embryos were infected with DsRed-labelled cells of Salmonella typhimurium. Using multidimensional digital imaging microscopy we were able to determine the exact location and fate of these bacterial pathogens in a living vertebrate host during three days. A low dose of wild-type S. typhimurium resulted in a lethal infection with bacteria residing and multiplying both in macrophage-like cells and at the epithelium of blood vessels. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) mutants of S. typhimurium, known to be attenuated in the murine model, proved to be non-pathogenic in the zebrafish embryos and were partially lysed in the bloodstream or degraded in macrophage-like cells. However, injection of LPS mutants in the yolk of the embryo resulted in uncontrolled bacterial proliferation. Heat-killed, wild-type bacteria were completely lysed extracellularly within minutes after injection, which shows that the blood of these zebrafish embryos does already contain lytic activity. In conclusion, the zebrafish embryo model allows for rapid, non-invasive and real time analysis of bacterial infections in a vertebrate host.
Trends in Microbiology. Oct, 2004 | Pubmed ID: 15381194
Mycobacterium Marinum Strains Can Be Divided into Two Distinct Types Based on Genetic Diversity and Virulence
Infection and Immunity. Nov, 2004 | Pubmed ID: 15501758
Mycobacterium marinum causes a systemic tuberculosis-like disease in a large number of poikilothermic animals and is used as a model for mycobacterial pathogenesis. In the present study, we infected zebra fish (Danio rerio) with different strains of M. marinum to determine the variation in pathogenicity. Depending on the M. marinum isolate, the fish developed an acute or chronic disease. Acute disease was characterized by uncontrolled growth of the pathogen and death of all animals within 16 days, whereas chronic disease was characterized by granuloma formation in different organs and survival of the animals for at least 4 to 8 weeks. Genetic analysis of the isolates by amplified fragment length polymorphism showed that M. marinum strains could be divided in two clusters. Cluster I contained predominantly strains isolated from humans with fish tank granuloma, whereas the majority of the cluster II strains were isolated from poikilothermic species. Acute disease progression was noted only with strains belonging to cluster I, whereas all chronic-disease-causing isolates belonged to cluster II. This difference in virulence was also observed in vitro: cluster I isolate Mma20 was able to infect and survive more efficiently in the human macrophage THP-1 and the carp leukocyte CLC cell lines than was the cluster II isolate Mma11. We conclude that strain characteristics play an important role in the pathogenicity of M. marinum. In addition, the correlation between genetic variation and host origin suggests that cluster I isolates are more pathogenic for humans.
Transcriptome Profiling of Adult Zebrafish at the Late Stage of Chronic Tuberculosis Due to Mycobacterium Marinum Infection
Molecular Immunology. Jun, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15829308
The Mycobacterium marinum-zebrafish infection model was used in this study for analysis of a host transcriptome response to mycobacterium infection at the organismal level. RNA isolated from adult zebrafish that showed typical signs of fish tuberculosis due to a chronic progressive infection with M. marinum was compared with RNA from healthy fish in microarray analyses. Spotted oligonucleotide sets (designed by Sigma-Compugen and MWG) and Affymetrix GeneChips were used, in total comprising 45,465 zebrafish transcript annotations. Based on a detailed comparative analysis and quantitative reverse transcriptase-PCR analysis, we present a validated reference set of 159 genes whose regulation is strongly affected by mycobacterial infection in the three types of microarrays analyzed. Furthermore, we analyzed the separate datasets of the microarrays with special emphasis on the expression profiles of immune-related genes. Upregulated genes include many known components of the inflammatory response and several genes that have previously been implicated in the response to mycobacterial infections in cell cultures of other organisms. Different marker genes of the myeloid lineage that have been characterized in zebrafish also showed increased expression. Furthermore, the zebrafish homologs of many signal transduction genes with relationship to the immune response were induced by M. marinum infection. Future functional analysis of these genes may contribute to understanding the mechanisms of mycobacterial pathogenesis. Since a large group of genes linked to immune responses did not show altered expression in the infected animals, these results suggest specific responses in mycobacterium-induced disease.
Infection and Immunity. Apr, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16552074
Innate immunity signaling mechanisms during vertebrate embryogenesis are largely unknown. To study Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling function in the zebrafish embryo model, we designed an experimental setup for antisense morpholino knockdown under conditions of bacterial infection. Clearance of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium Ra bacteria was significantly impaired after knockdown of myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88), a common adaptor protein in TLR and interleukin-1 receptor signaling. Thereby, we demonstrate for the first time that the innate immune response of the developing embryo involves MyD88-dependent signaling, which further establishes the zebrafish embryo as a model for the study of vertebrate innate immunity.
The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. Jan, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18162949
Mycobacterium marinum causes tuberculosis in fish and can cause skin infections in humans who swim in contaminated water or who have direct contact with infected fish. We report the case study of an 18-month-old girl with M. marinum abscesses, who acquired the infection through indirect contact with a contaminated bucket. Appropriate cleaning of aquarium equipment is very important, especially with young children in the household.
Identification and Real-time Imaging of a Myc-expressing Neutrophil Population Involved in Inflammation and Mycobacterial Granuloma Formation in Zebrafish
Developmental and Comparative Immunology. 2008 | Pubmed ID: 17553562
By enhancer trap screening we identified a transgenic zebrafish line showing leukocyte-specific YFP expression during late embryo and early larval development. Its enhancer detection insertion was mapped near a novel member of the myc proto-oncogene family, encoding transcription factors known to be important for regulating human myelopoiesis. Characterization of the zebrafish myc family showed that only this particular myc gene is strongly expressed in leukocytes. To identify the myc/YFP-expressing cell type, we re-examined specificity of described myeloid markers by multiplex fluorescent in situ hybridization, showing that lcp1 can be considered as a general leukocyte marker, csf1r as a macrophage-specific marker, and mpx and lyz as neutrophil-specific markers. Subsequent colocalization analysis defined the YFP-positive cells as a subset of the neutrophil population. Using real-time confocal imaging we demonstrate that these cells migrate to sites of inflammation and are involved in innate immune responses towards infections, including Mycobacterium marinum-induced granuloma formation.
Specificity of the Zebrafish Host Transcriptome Response to Acute and Chronic Mycobacterial Infection and the Role of Innate and Adaptive Immune Components
Molecular Immunology. Jul, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19409617
Pathogenic mycobacteria have the ability to survive within macrophages and persist inside granulomas. The complex host-pathogen interactions that determine the outcome of a mycobacterial infection process result in marked alterations of the host gene expression profile. Here we used the zebrafish model to investigate the specificity of the host response to infections with two mycobacterium strains that give distinct disease outcomes: an acute disease with early lethality or a chronic disease with granuloma formation, caused by Mycobacterium marinum strains Mma20 and E11, respectively. We performed a microarray study of different stages of disease progression in adult zebrafish and found that the acute and the chronic strains evoked partially overlapping host transcriptome signatures, despite that they induce profoundly different disease phenotypes. Both strains affected many signaling cascades, including WNT and TLR pathways. Interestingly, the strongest differences were observed at the initial stage of the disease. The immediate response to the acute strain was characterized by higher expression of genes encoding MHC class I proteins, matrix metalloproteinases, transcription factors, cytokines and other common immune response proteins. In contrast, small GTPase and histone gene groups showed higher expression in response to the chronic strain. We also found that nearly 1000 mycobacterium-responsive genes overlapped between the expression signatures of infected zebrafish adults and embryos at different stages of granuloma formation. Since adult zebrafish possess an adaptive immune system similar to mammals and zebrafish embryos rely solely on innate immunity, this overlap indicates a major contribution of the innate component of the immune system in the response to mycobacterial infection. Taken together, our comparison of the transcriptome responses involved in acute versus chronic infections and in the embryonic versus adult situation provides important new leads for investigating the mechanism of mycobacterial pathogenesis.
The International Journal of Developmental Biology. 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19557689
Basic research in pattern formation is concerned with the generation of phenotypes and tissues. It can therefore lead to new tools for medical research. These include phenotypic screening assays, applications in tissue engineering, as well as general advances in biomedical knowledge. Our aim here is to discuss this emerging field with special reference to tools based on zebrafish developmental biology. We describe phenotypic screening assays being developed in our own and other labs. Our assays involve: (i) systemic or local administration of a test compound or drug to zebrafish in vivo; (ii) the subsequent detection or "readout" of a defined phenotypic change. A positive readout may result from binding of the test compound to a molecular target involved in a developmental pathway. We present preliminary data on assays for compounds that modulate skeletal patterning, bone turnover, immune responses, inflammation and early-life stress. The assays use live zebrafish embryos and larvae as well as adult fish undergoing caudal fin regeneration. We describe proof-of-concept studies on the localised targeting of compounds into regeneration blastemas using microcarriers. Zebrafish are cheaper to maintain than rodents, produce large numbers of transparent eggs, and some zebrafish assays could be scaled-up into medium and high throughput screens. However, advances in automation and imaging are required. Zebrafish cannot replace mammalian models in the drug development pipeline. Nevertheless, they can provide a cost-effective bridge between cell-based assays and mammalian whole-organism models.
Disease Models & Mechanisms. Nov-Dec, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19779068
The zebrafish genome contains ten genes that encode class II cytokine-like peptides, of which the two that are related most closely to mammalian interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) were named IFN-gamma1 and IFN-gamma2. Although the zebrafish has become a popular model system to study immune mechanisms, and although interferons are central regulators of immunity, which zebrafish cytokines correspond functionally to mammalian IFN-gamma has not been established. We used zebrafish embryos to assay the functions of IFN-gamma1 and IFN-gamma2, and have identified a subset of zebrafish homologs of the mammalian IFN-responsive genes as IFN-gamma targets in the zebrafish embryo: these genes are upregulated in response to raised levels of either IFN-gamma1 or IFN-gamma2. Infection studies using two different pathogens show that IFN-gamma signalling is required for resistance against bacterial infections in the young embryo and that the levels of IFN-gamma need to be regulated tightly: raising IFN-gamma levels sensitizes fish embryos against bacterial infection. Embryos injected with high doses of Escherichia coli are able to clear the bacteria within a day, and the gamma-interferons are necessary for this defence reaction. The protective response to Yersinia ruckeri, a natural fish pathogen that is lethal at low doses, also requires IFN-gamma. As in the induction of target genes, the two interferons act at least partly redundantly. Together with the previously demonstrated type III interferon response, these results show that the counterparts of the mammalian viral and bacterial interferon-dependent defence functions are in place in zebrafish embryos, and suggest that zebrafish IFN-gamma1 and IFN-gamma2 are functionally equivalent to mammalian IFN-gamma.
Discovery of Zebrafish (Danio Rerio) Interleukin-23 Alpha (IL-23α) Chain, a Subunit Important for the Formation of IL-23, a Cytokine Involved in the Development of Th17 Cells and Inflammation
Molecular Immunology. Apr, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21324528
This paper reports the cloning and sequencing of interleukin (IL)-23 p19 subunit for the first time within a non-mammalian species, the zebrafish (Danio rerio), which was discovered using a synteny approach. In addition, amino acid sequences were for IL-23 p19 subunits were also predicted from the stickleback, Fugu and Tetraodon genomes and included in this investigation. The zebrafish IL-23 p19 cDNA consisted of a 66bp 5' UTR, a 249bp 3' UTR and a single open reading frame of 567bp giving a predicted 188 aa IL-23 p19 molecule. Multiple alignment of zebrafish IL-23 p19, with other known IL-23 p19 and IL-12 p35 amino acid sequences revealed areas of amino acid conservation, such as the presence of four predicted α-helixes, cysteines important for disulphide bond formation and the conservation of a tryptophan known to interact with the receptor. Amino acid homologies and phylogenetic analysis confirmed the relationship of the fish IL-23 p19 subunits with their mammalian homologues. All the teleost fish IL-23 p19 subunits were found to have 4 exons and 3 introns similar to that of human and mouse IL-23 p19 and a limited degree of synteny was found between the organisms for the regions containing the IL-23 p19 genes with only PAB-dependent poly(A)-specific ribonuclease subunit 2 (PAN2) and IL-23 p19 found in the same order on human chromosome 12 and all the fish genomes looked at. Lastly using real-time PCR, constitutive expression of IL-12 p40 and IL-23 p19 was observed in the kidney, liver, gut and muscle with IL-12 p40 expression higher than IL-23 p19. As soon as an hour after stimulation with LPS, there was an increase of IL-23 p19 in zebrafish leukocytes and an increase of IL-1β, IL-12 p40 and IL-23 p19 expression was found after infection of zebrafish for 1 or 6 days with Mycobaterium marinum strain E11.
Zebrafish Embryo Screen for Mycobacterial Genes Involved in the Initiation of Granuloma Formation Reveals a Newly Identified ESX-1 Component
Disease Models & Mechanisms. Jul, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21372049
The hallmark of tuberculosis (TB) is the formation of granulomas, which are clusters of infected macrophages surrounded by additional macrophages, neutrophils and lymphocytes. Although it has long been thought that granulomas are beneficial for the host, there is evidence that mycobacteria also promote the formation of these structures. In this study, we aimed to identify new mycobacterial factors involved in the initial stages of granuloma formation. We exploited the zebrafish embryo Mycobacterium marinum infection model to study initiation of granuloma formation and developed an in vivo screen to select for random M. marinum mutants that were unable to induce granuloma formation efficiently. Upon screening 200 mutants, three mutants repeatedly initiated reduced granuloma formation. One of the mutants was found to be defective in the espL gene, which is located in the ESX-1 cluster. The ESX-1 cluster is disrupted in the Mycobacterium bovis BCG vaccine strain and encodes a specialized secretion system known to be important for granuloma formation and virulence. Although espL has not been implicated in protein secretion before, we observed a strong effect on the secretion of the ESX-1 substrates ESAT-6 and EspE. We conclude that our zebrafish embryo M. marinum screen is a useful tool to identify mycobacterial genes involved in the initial stages of granuloma formation and that we have identified a new component of the ESX-1 secretion system. We are confident that our approach will contribute to the knowledge of mycobacterial virulence and could be helpful for the development of new TB vaccines.
Identification of a Glycosyltransferase from Mycobacterium Marinum Involved in Addition of a Caryophyllose Moiety in Lipooligosaccharides
Journal of Bacteriology. May, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21378187
Deletion of Mycobacterium marinum MMAR2333 resulted in the loss of three of four subclasses of lipooligosaccharides (LOSs). The mutant was unable to extend an intermediate (LOS-II*) by addition of caryophyllose. These data and the predicted domain structure suggest that MMAR2333 is a glycosyltransferase involved in the generation of a lipid-linked caryophyllose donor.
Cellular Microbiology. Jan, 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22256857
ESX-5 is a mycobacterial type VII protein secretion system responsible for transport of numerous PE and PPE proteins. It is involved in the induction of host cell death and modulation of the cytokine response in vitro. In this work, we studied the effects of ESX-5 in embryonic and adult zebrafish using Mycobacterium marinum. We found that ESX-5-deficient M. marinum was slightly attenuated in zebrafish embryos. Surprisingly, the same mutant showed highly increased virulence in adult zebrafish, characterized by increased bacterial loads and early onset of granuloma formation with rapid development of necrotic centres. This early onset of granuloma formation was accompanied by an increased expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and tissue remodelling genes in zebrafish infected with the ESX-5 mutant. Experiments using RAG-1-deficient zebrafish showed that the increased virulence of the ESX-5 mutant was not dependent on the adaptive immune system. Mixed infection experiments with wild-type and ESX-5 mutant bacteria showed that the latter had a specific advantage in adult zebrafish and outcompeted wild-type bacteria. Together our experiments indicate that ESX-5-mediated protein secretion is used by M. marinum to establish a moderate and persistent infection.