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In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (31)
- Frontiers in Bioscience : a Journal and Virtual Library
- Developmental Biology
- The International Journal of Developmental Biology
- Developmental Biology
- Developmental Biology
- Experimental Hematology
- Mechanisms of Development
- Current Biology : CB
- Development Genes and Evolution
- British Journal of Haematology
- Nature Reviews. Genetics
- Developmental Biology
- Gene Expression Patterns : GEP
- Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.)
- Mechanisms of Development
- Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.)
- Current Biology : CB
- Current Opinion in Pharmacology
- Neuromuscular Disorders : NMD
- PloS One
- Methods in Cell Biology
- The Journal of Clinical Investigation
- Development (Cambridge, England)
- Methods in Enzymology
- Methods in Enzymology
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Articles by Graham J. Lieschke in JoVE
A infecção de embriões de zebrafish com patógenos bacterianos intracelulares
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
Embriões do zebrafish transparente provaram anfitriões modelo útil para visualizar e interações de estudo funcional entre as células imunes inatas e patógenos bacterianos intracelulares, tais como
Other articles by Graham J. Lieschke on PubMed
Tyrosine Residues of the Granulocyte Colony-stimulating Factor Receptor Transmit Proliferation and Differentiation Signals in Murine Bone Marrow Cells
Blood. Feb, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 11806990
Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) is the major regulator of granulopoiesis and acts through binding to its specific receptor (G-CSF-R) on neutrophilic granulocytes. Previous studies of signaling from the 4 G-CSF-R cytoplasmic tyrosine residues used model cell lines that may have idiosyncratic, nonphysiological responses. This study aimed to identify specific signals transmitted by the receptor tyrosine residues in primary myeloid cells. To bypass the presence of endogenous G-CSF-R, a chimeric receptor containing the extracellular domain of the epidermal growth factor receptor in place of the entire extracellular domain of the G-CSF-R was used. A series of chimeric receptors containing tyrosine mutations to phenylalanine, either individually or collectively, was constructed and expressed in primary bone marrow cells from G-CSF-deficient mice. Proliferation and differentiation responses of receptor-expressing bone marrow cells stimulated by epidermal growth factor were measured. An increased 50% effective concentration to stimulus of the receptor Y(null) mutant indicated that specific signals from tyrosine residues were required for cell proliferation, particularly at low concentrations of stimulus. Impaired responses by mutant receptors implicated G-CSF-R Y(764) in cell proliferation and Y(729) in granulocyte differentiation signaling. In addition, different sensitivities to ligand stimulation between mutant receptors indicated that G-CSF-R Y(744) and possibly Y(729) have an inhibitory role in cell proliferation. STAT activation was not affected by tyrosine mutations, whereas ERK activation appeared to depend, at least in part, on Y(764). These observations have suggested novel roles for the G-CSF-R tyrosine residues in primary cells that were not observed previously in studies in cell lines.
Frontiers in Bioscience : a Journal and Virtual Library. Apr, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 11897571
The zebrafish (Danio rerio) has been widely utilised for the study of developmental biology, which has lead to the evolution of sophisticated cellular and molecular approaches. More recently, the rapid progress of various zebrafish genomic infrastructure initiatives is facilitating the development of zebrafish models of human disease. This review aims to describe several representative examples of how the zebrafish can be successfully used to identify novel genes and assign gene function, providing invaluable clues to human pathophysiology.
Zebrafish SPI-1 (PU.1) Marks a Site of Myeloid Development Independent of Primitive Erythropoiesis: Implications for Axial Patterning
Developmental Biology. Jun, 2002 | Pubmed ID: 12051816
The mammalian transcription factor SPI-1 (synonyms: SPI1, PU.1, or Sfpi1) plays a critical role in myeloid development. To examine early myeloid commitment in the zebrafish embryo, we isolated a gene from zebrafish that is a SPI-1 orthologue on the basis of homology and phylogenetic considerations. The zebrafish spi1 (pu1) gene was first expressed at 12 h postfertilization in rostral lateral plate mesoderm (LPM), anatomically isolated from erythroid development in caudal lateral plate mesoderm. Fate-mapping traced rostral LPM cells from the region of initial spi1 expression to a myeloid fate. spi1 expression was lost in the bloodless mutant cloche, but rostral spi1 expression and myeloid development were preserved in the mutant spadetail, despite its complete erythropoietic failure. This dissociation of myeloid and erythroid development was further explored in studies of embryos overexpressing BMP-4, or chordin, in bmp-deficient swirl and snailhouse mutants, and chordin-deficient chordino mutants. These studies demonstrate that, in zebrafish, spi1 marks a rostral population of LPM cells committed to a myeloid fate anatomically separated from and developmentally independent of erythroid commitment in the caudal LPM. Such complete anatomical and developmental dissociation of two hematopoietic lineages adds an interesting complexity to the understanding of vertebrate hematopoietic development and presents significant implications for the mechanisms regulating axial patterning.
The International Journal of Developmental Biology. 2002 | Pubmed ID: 12141435
The zebrafish (Danio rerio) has emerged as an informative vertebrate model for developmental studies, particularly those employing genetic approaches such as mutagenesis and screening. Zebrafish myelopoiesis has recently been characterized, paving the way for the experimental strengths of this model organism to contribute to an improved understanding of the genetic regulation of myeloid development. Zebrafish have a multi-lineage myeloid compartment with two types of granulocyte (heterophil/neutrophil and eosinophil granulocytes), and monocyte/macrophages, each with characteristic morphological features and histochemical staining properties. Molecular markers have been characterised for various myeloid cell types and their precursor cells, for example: stem cells (scl, hhex, lmo2), myeloid lineage precursors (spi1/pu.1, c/ebp1), heterophil granulocytes (mpx/mpo), macrophages (L-plastin, fms). In zebrafish, the sites of early myeloid and erythroid commitment are anatomically separated, being located in the rostral and caudal lateral plate mesoderm respectively. Functional macrophages appear before cells displaying granulocytic markers. By the second day of life, cells expressing granulocyte- and macrophage-specific genes are scattered throughout the embryo, but tend to aggregate in the ventral venous plexus, which may be a site of their production or a preferred site for their residence. Even in early embryos, macrophages are phagocytically active, and granulocytes participate in acute inflammation. Equipped with an understanding of the developmental biology of these various myeloid cells and a set of tools for their identification and functional study, we will now be able to exploit the experimental strengths of this model organism to better understand the genetic regulation of myelopoiesis.
Blood. Nov, 2003 | Pubmed ID: 12869502
The spi1 (pu.1) gene has recently been identified as a useful marker of early myeloid cells in zebrafish. To enhance the versatility of this organism as a model for studying myeloid development, the promoter of this gene has been isolated and characterized. Transient transgenesis revealed that a 5.3 kilobase promoter fragment immediately upstream of the spi1 coding sequence was sufficient to drive expression of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in injected embryos in a manner that largely recapitulated the native spi1 gene expression pattern. This fragment was successfully used to produce a germ line transgenic line of zebrafish with EGFP-expressing myeloid cells. These TG(spi1:EGFP)pA301 transgenic zebrafish represent a valuable tool for further studies of myeloid development and its perturbation.
Developmental Biology. May, 2004 | Pubmed ID: 15081375
The Netrin receptor Deleted in colon cancer (Dcc) has been shown to play a pivotal role in the guidance of nascent axons towards the ventral midline in the developing nervous systems of both vertebrates and invertebrates. In contrast, the function during embryogenesis of a second Dcc-like Netrin receptor Neogenin has not yet been defined. We used antisense morpholino oligonucleotides to knockdown Neogenin activity in zebrafish embryos and demonstrate that Neogenin plays an important role in neural tube formation and somitogenesis. In Neogenin knockdown embryos, cavitation within the neural rod failed to occur, producing a neural tube lacking a lumen. Somite formation was also defective, implicating Neogenin in the migration events underlying convergent extension during gastrulation. These observations suggest a role for Neogenin in determining cell polarity or migrational directionality of both neuroectodermal and mesodermal cells during early embryonic development.
Developmental Biology. Dec, 2004 | Pubmed ID: 15581882
The pharyngeal arches give rise to multiple organs critical for diverse processes, including the thymus, thyroid and parathyroids. Several molecular regulators of thymus and thyroid organogenesis are strikingly conserved between mammals and zebrafish. However, land animals have parathyroids whereas fish have gills. The murine transcription factor Glial cells missing 2 (Gcm2) is expressed specifically in the parathyroid primordium in the endodermal epithelium of the third pharyngeal pouch, and in both mice and humans is required for normal development of parathyroid glands. The molecular regulation of fish gill organogenesis remains to be described. We report the expression of gcm2 in the zebrafish pharyngeal epithelium and a requirement for Hox group 3 paralogs for gcm2 expression. Strikingly, zebrafish gcm2 is expressed in the ectodermal portion of the pharyngeal epithelium and is required for the development of the gill filament buds, precursors of fish-specific gill filaments. This study identifies yet another role for a GCM gene in embryonic development and indicates a role for gcm2 during the evolution of divergent pharyngeal morphologies.
Experimental Hematology. Feb, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15676212
Various TEL-JAK2 fusions have been identified in patients with lymphoblastic and myeloid leukemias that result in constitutive activation of the JAK2 kinase domain. Such fusions can mediate factor-independent growth of hematopoietic cell lines and induction of malignancy in mouse models.
Knockdown of Zebrafish Crim1 Results in a Bent Tail Phenotype with Defects in Somite and Vascular Development
Mechanisms of Development. Apr, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16524703
The Crim1 gene encodes a transmembrane protein containing six cysteine-rich repeats similar to those found in the BMP antagonist, chordin (chd). To investigate its physiological role, zebrafish crim1 was cloned and shown to be both maternally and zygotically expressed during zebrafish development in sites including the vasculature, intermediate cell mass, notochord, and otic vesicle. Bent or hooked tails with U-shaped somites were observed in 85% of morphants from 12 hpf. This was accompanied by a loss of muscle pioneer cells. While morpholino knockdown of crim1 showed some evidence of ventralisation, including expansion of the intermediate cell mass (ICM), reduction in head size bent tails and disruption to the somites and notochord, this did not mimic the classically ventralised phenotype, as assessed by the pattern of expression of the dorsal markers chordin, otx2 and the ventral markers eve1, pax2.1, tal1 and gata1 between 75% epiboly and six-somites. From 24 hpf, morphants displayed an expansion of the ventral mesoderm-derived ICM, as evidenced by expansion of tal1, lmo2 and crim1 itself. Analysis of the crim1 morphant phenotype in Tg(fli:EGFP) fish showed a clear reduction in the endothelial cells forming the intersegmental vessels and a loss of the dorsal longitudinal anastomotic vessel (DLAV). Hence, the primary role of zebrafish crim1 is likely to be the regulation of somitic and vascular development.
Current Biology : CB. Mar, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16527746
In the zebrafish embryo, primitive hematopoiesis initiates in two spatially distinct regions. Rostrally, the cells of the anterior lateral plate mesoderm (ALPM) give rise exclusively to cells of the myeloid lineage in a pu.1-dependent manner. Caudally, in the posterior lateral plate mesoderm (PLPM), the expression of gata1 defines a precursor pool that gives rise predominantly to the embryonic erythrocytes. The transcription factor scl acts upstream of both gata1 and pu.1 in these precursor pools, activating a series of conserved transcription factors that cell-autonomously specify either myeloid or erythroid fates. However, the mechanisms underlying the spatial separation of the hematopoietic precursor pools and the induction of differential gene expression within these pools are not well understood. We show here that the Bmp receptor lost-a-fin/alk8 is required for rostral pu.1 expression and myelopoiesis, identifying an early genetic event that distinguishes between the induction of anterior and posterior hematopoiesis. Introducing a constitutively active version of the Alk8 receptor led to increased pu.1 expression, but the role of alk8 was independent of the scl-dependent cell-fate pathway. Furthermore, the role of Alk8 in myelopoiesis was genetically separable from its earlier role in dorsal-ventral embryonic patterning.
Development Genes and Evolution. Sep, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16532340
In separate expression pattern and micro-array screens the zinc finger containing factor, znfl2, has been previously implicated in hematopoiesis. Here we analysed znfl2 expression in detail and performed genetic epistatic analysis in a series of hematopoietic mutants and transient gain-of-function models. znfl2 expression in the hematopoietic intermediate mesoderm and derived erythrocytes required early genes cloche and spadetail, but not gata1. Expression was up-regulated in scl gain-of-function embryos, identifying znfl2 as an early erythroid factor that is regulated upstream or independently of gata1. Furthermore, we identified a duplicate znfl2 gene in the genome (znfl2b) which was expressed in early mesendoderm and weakly in the lateral plate mesoderm, overlapping in expression with znfl2. The production of loss-of-function models for znfl2, znfl2b and znfl2/znfl2b together suggested that these erythrocyte specific zinc finger genes are dispensible for erythropoiesis.
British Journal of Haematology. Oct, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16848796
Nature Reviews. Genetics. May, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17440532
Despite the pre-eminence of the mouse in modelling human disease, several aspects of murine biology limit its routine use in large-scale genetic and therapeutic screening. Many researchers who are interested in an embryologically and genetically tractable disease model have now turned to zebrafish. Zebrafish biology allows ready access to all developmental stages, and the optical clarity of embryos and larvae allow real-time imaging of developing pathologies. Sophisticated mutagenesis and screening strategies on a large scale, and with an economy that is not possible in other vertebrate systems, have generated zebrafish models of a wide variety of human diseases. This Review surveys the achievements and potential of zebrafish for modelling human diseases and for drug discovery and development.
CREB Activity Modulates Neural Cell Proliferation, Midbrain-hindbrain Organization and Patterning in Zebrafish
Developmental Biology. Jul, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17531969
Neural stem/progenitor cells (NPCs) self-renew and differentiate, generating neuronal and non-neuronal (glial) cell lineages. Although a number of factors, including transcription factors, have been shown to be important in the regulation of NPC proliferation and differentiation, the precise molecular networks remain to be identified. The cAMP Response Element-Binding protein (CREB) is a transcription factor important for neuronal survival, differentiation and plasticity. Recent work suggests that CREB activation, via serine phosphorylation in the kinase inducible domain, is important for neurogenesis in the adult rodent brain. We sought to further investigate CREB function in neurogenesis, using the zebrafish (Danio rerio). Structural and functional analysis of the zebrafish CREB orthologue showed high conservation with mammalian CREB. Activated (phosphorylated) CREB (pCREB) was localised to all known proliferation zones in the adult zebrafish brain, including actively cycling cells. Furthermore, we found that modulating CREB activity during early zebrafish development caused significant defects in neural proliferation, midbrain-hindbrain organization and body patterning. These findings reveal broader and stage-specific physiological roles of CREB function during vertebrate neural development and proliferation.
Characterization of the Zebrafish Matrix Metalloproteinase 9 Gene and Its Developmental Expression Pattern
Gene Expression Patterns : GEP. Jan, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 16815100
Members of the matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) family are important for the remodeling of the extracellular matrix in a number of biological processes including a variety of immune responses. Two members of the family, MMP2 and MMP9, are highly expressed in specific myeloid cell populations in which they play a role in the innate immune response. To further expand the repertoire of molecular reagents available to study zebrafish myeloid cell development, the matrix metalloproteinase 9 (mmp9) gene from this organism has been identified and characterized. The encoded protein is 680 amino acids with high homology to known MMP9 proteins, particularly those of other teleost fish. Maternal transcripts of mmp9 are deposited in the oocyte and dispersed throughout the early embryo. These are replaced by specific zygotic transcripts in the notochord from 12h post fertilization (hpf) and also transiently in the anterior mesoderm from 14 to 16h post fertilization. From 24h post fertilization, mmp9 expression was detected in a population of circulating white blood cells that are distinct from macrophages, and which migrate to the site of trauma, and so likely represent zebrafish heterophils. In the adult, mmp9 expression was most prominent in the splenic cords, a site occupied by mature myeloid cells in other species. These results suggest that mmp9 will serve as a useful marker of mature myeloid cells in the zebrafish.
Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.). 2008 | Pubmed ID: 19109716
The rapid embryonic development and high fecundity of zebrafish contribute to the great advantages of this model for the study of developmental genetics. Transient disruption of the normal function of a gene during development can be achieved by microinjecting mRNA, DNA or short chemically stabilized anti-sense oligomers, called morpholinos (MOs), into early zebrafish embryos. The ensuing develop ment of the microinjected embryos is observed over the following hours and days to analyze the impact of the microinjected products on embryogenesis. Compared to stable reverse genetic approaches (sta ble transgenesis, targeted mutants recovered by TILLING), these transient reverse genetic approaches are vastly quicker, relatively affordable, and require little animal facility space. Common applications of these methodologies allow analysis of gain-of-function (gene overexpression or dominant active), loss-of-function (gene knock down or dominant negative), mosaic analysis, lineage-restricted studies and cell tracing experiments. The use of these transient approaches for the manipulation of gene expression has improved our understanding of many key developmental pathways including both the Wnt/beta-catenin and Wnt/PCP pathways, as covered in some detail in Chapter 17 of this book. This chapter describes the most common and versatile approaches: gain of function and loss of function using DNA and mRNA injections and loss of function using MOs.
Blood. Apr, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18182572
After a decade of the "modern era" of zebrafish hematology research, what have been their major contributions to hematology and what challenges does the model face? This review argues that, in hematology, zebrafish have demonstrated their suitability, are proving their utility, have supplied timely and novel discoveries, and are poised for further significant contributions. It presents an overview of the anatomy, physiology, and genetics of zebrafish hematopoiesis underpinning their use in hematology research. Whereas reverse genetic techniques enable functional studies of particular genes of interest, forward genetics remains zebrafish's particular strength. Mutants with diverse and interesting hematopoietic defects are emerging from multiple genetic screens. Some mutants model hereditary blood diseases, occasionally leading to disease genes first; others provide insights into developmental hematology. Models of malignant hematologic disorders provide tools for drug-target and pharmaceutics discovery. Numerous transgenic zebrafish with fluorescently marked blood cells enable live-cell imaging of inflammatory responses and host-pathogen interactions previously inaccessible to direct observation in vivo, revealing unexpected aspects of leukocyte behavior. Zebrafish disease models almost uniquely provide a basis for efficient whole animal chemical library screens for new therapeutics. Despite some limitations and challenges, their successes and discovery potential mean that zebrafish are here to stay in hematology research.
Blood. Feb, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 18849488
We demonstrate that in zebrafish, the microRNA miR-451 plays a crucial role in promoting erythroid maturation, in part via its target transcript gata2. Zebrafish miR-144 and miR-451 are processed from a single precursor transcript selectively expressed in erythrocytes. In contrast to other hematopoietic mutants, the zebrafish mutant meunier (mnr) showed intact erythroid specification but diminished miR-144/451 expression. Although erythropoiesis initiated normally in mnr, erythrocyte maturation was morphologically retarded. Morpholino knockdown of miR-451 increased erythrocyte immaturity in wild-type embryos, and miR-451 RNA duplexes partially rescued erythroid maturation in mnr, demonstrating a requirement and role for miR-451 in erythrocyte maturation. mnr provided a selectively miR-144/451-deficient background, facilitating studies to discern miRNA function and validate candidate targets. Among computer-predicted miR-451 targets potentially mediating these biologic effects, the pro-stem cell transcription factor gata2 was an attractive candidate. In vivo reporter assays validated the predicted miR-451/gata2-3'UTR interaction, gata2 down-regulation was delayed in miR-451-knockdown and mnr embryos, and gata2 knockdown partially restored erythroid maturation in mnr, collectively confirming gata2 down-regulation as pivotal for miR-451-driven erythroid maturation. These studies define a new genetic pathway promoting erythroid maturation (mnr/miR-451/gata2) and provide a rare example of partial rescue of a mutant phenotype solely by miRNA overexpression.
Mechanisms of Development. Mar-Apr, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19027849
Erg, a member of the ETS family of transcription factors, has been implicated by previous studies in endothelial and haematopoietic development. Deregulation of the human ERG locus is associated with acute myeloid leukaemia, prostate cancer and Ewing's sarcoma. To better understand the role of Erg during early development, we utilised the zebrafish as a model amenable to descriptive and functional studies in vivo. Zebrafish have a single erg gene that is expressed in mesoderm and its vascular derivatives during angioblast migration, vasculogenesis and early angiogenesis. Mutant and morphant expression analyses placed erg in a genetic pathway downstream of cloche, tal1/scl and etsrp during early angioblast migration. Furthermore, a combination of gain-of-function and loss-of-function studies suggested a redundant yet specific role for erg in both angioblast specification/proliferation and early angiogenesis, and a synergistic interaction with the critical ETS factor etsrp.
Abnormal Nuclear Pore Formation Triggers Apoptosis in the Intestinal Epithelium of Elys-deficient Zebrafish
Gastroenterology. Mar, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19073184
Zebrafish mutants generated by ethylnitrosourea-mutagenesis provide a powerful tool for dissecting the genetic regulation of developmental processes, including organogenesis. One zebrafish mutant, "flotte lotte" (flo), displays striking defects in intestinal, liver, pancreas, and eye formation at 78 hours postfertilization (hpf). In this study, we sought to identify the underlying mutated gene in flo and link the genetic lesion to its phenotype.
Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.). 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19378107
Hundreds of tiny noncoding RNAs known as microRNAs (miRNAs) have been identified in the genomes of plants and animals. Studies are increasingly demonstrating that individual miRNAs are important in normal development and physiology. miRNAs are regulators of gene expression that bind target mRNAs and modulate their translation and turnover. The specificity of this regulation is achieved by partial sequence complementarity between the miRNA and its target mRNA. Understanding which mRNAs are targeted by each particular microRNA is critical to an understanding of the biologic role of any particular miRNA. Bioinformatic approaches can be used to predict mRNAs that may be miRNA targets, but each of these predictions requires experimental validation. We describe a method for a reporter assay based on a fluorescence intensity readout that uses transient techniques in zebrafish to easily deliver the reporter assay components. In addition, we describe a rigorously controlled strategy for determining the bona fide miRNA binding sites in the 3'UTR of mRNAs.
Current Opinion in Pharmacology. Oct, 2010 | Pubmed ID: 20538521
The zebrafish (Danio rerio) is a model organism making useful contributions in many areas of biological research. Zebrafish have proven particularly suitable for studying early development. The transparency and ex vivo development of zebrafish embryos means that early embryology can be easily visualized, especially using transgenic strains expressing fluorophores marking tissues of interest. High fecundity and tolerance of dense mutagenesis have made it a practical model for forward genetic screening and creation of mutagenized libraries from which stable mutant alleles can be recovered. Transient genetic manipulation by microinjection of mRNA (overexpression) or antisense morpholino oligonucleotides (knockdown) provide convenient methods for functionally assessing genetic regulatory pathways without the need for extended breeding strategies. A standout example of the utility of this model has been its application to modeling of the earliest stages of hematopoiesis. Zebrafish developmental hematopoiesis shows close correspondence to the development of the mammalian hematopoietic system and is regulated by conserved molecular pathways. This review highlights key recent studies that have used this model to provide insights into vertebrate hematopoietic development and innate immunity.
Neuromuscular Disorders : NMD. Dec, 2010 | Pubmed ID: 20850317
Duchenne muscular dystrophy is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. As in humans, zebrafish dystrophin is initially expressed at the peripheral ends of the myofibres adjacent to the myotendinous junction and gradually shifts to non-junctional sites. Dystrophin-deficient zebrafish larvae are characterised by abundant necrotic fibres being replaced by mono-nucleated infiltrates, extensive fibrosis accompanied by inflammation, and a broader variation in muscle fibre cross-sectional areas. Muscle progenitor proliferation cannot compensate for the extensive skeletal muscle loss. Live imaging of dystrophin-deficient zebrafish larvae documents detaching myofibres elicited by muscle contraction. Correspondingly, the progressive phenotype of dystrophin-deficient zebrafish resembles many aspects of the human disease, suggesting that specific advantages of the zebrafish model system, such as the ability to undertake in vivo drug screens and real time analysis of muscle fibre loss, could be used to make novel insights relevant to understanding and treating the pathological basis of dystrophin-deficient muscular dystrophy.
Blood. Jan, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21084707
Macrophages and neutrophils play important roles during the innate immune response, phagocytosing invading microbes and delivering antimicrobial compounds to the site of injury. Functional analyses of the cellular innate immune response in zebrafish infection/inflammation models have been aided by transgenic lines with fluorophore-marked neutrophils. However, it has not been possible to study macrophage behaviors and neutrophil/macrophage interactions in vivo directly because there has been no macrophage-only reporter line. To remove this roadblock, a macrophage-specific marker was identified (mpeg1) and its promoter used in mpeg1-driven transgenes. mpeg1-driven transgenes are expressed in macrophage-lineage cells that do not express neutrophil-marking transgenes. Using these lines, the different dynamic behaviors of neutrophils and macrophages after wounding were compared side-by-side in compound transgenics. Macrophage/neutrophil interactions, such as phagocytosis of senescent neutrophils, were readily observed in real time. These zebrafish transgenes provide a new resource that will contribute to the fields of inflammation, infection, and leukocyte biology.
PloS One. 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21901140
Hematopoiesis requires the spatiotemporal organization of regulatory factors to successfully orchestrate diverse lineage specificity from stem and progenitor cells. Med12 is a regulatory component of the large Mediator complex that enables contact between the general RNA polymerase II transcriptional machinery and enhancer bound regulatory factors. We have identified a new zebrafish med12 allele, syr, with a single missense mutation causing a valine to aspartic acid change at position 1046. Syr shows defects in hematopoiesis, which predominantly affect the myeloid lineage. Syr has identified a hematopoietic cell-specific requirement for Med12, suggesting a new role for this transcriptional regulator.
Methods in Cell Biology. 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21924173
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small endogenous RNAs of approximately 23 nucleotides that regulate the cellular transcriptome by binding to target mRNAs in a sequence-restricted manner, thereby modulating target transcript translation and turnover. Although the direct repressive trans-acting action of miRNAs is to cause a net reduction in the total amount of protein generated from their target mRNAs, developmental and physiological processes have combined this with the flexibility of spatial and temporal regulation of both the miRNAs and their targets to employ miRNAs in a range of regulatory roles. These different roles achieve diverse regulatory outcomes. Five common in vivo regulatory roles of miRNAs are summarized, along with their key defining attributes that could be experimentally addressed to distinguish between them. Methods utilizing zebrafish that are suitable for determining the functional role of a particular miRNA of interest are outlined.
In Vivo Visualization and Attenuation of Oxidized Lipid Accumulation in Hypercholesterolemic Zebrafish
The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Dec, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 22105168
Oxidative modification of LDL is an early pathological event in the development of atherosclerosis. Oxidation events such as malondialdehyde (MDA) formation may produce specific, immunogenic epitopes. Indeed, antibodies to MDA-derived epitopes are widely used in atherosclerosis research and have been demonstrated to enable cardiovascular imaging. In this study, we engineered a transgenic zebrafish with temperature-inducible expression of an EGFP-labeled single-chain human monoclonal antibody, IK17, which binds to MDA-LDL, and used optically transparent zebrafish larvae for imaging studies. Feeding a high-cholesterol diet (HCD) supplemented with a red fluorescent lipid marker to the transgenic zebrafish resulted in vascular lipid accumulation, quantified in live animals using confocal microscopy. After heat shock-induced expression of IK17-EGFP, we measured the time course of vascular accumulation of IK17-specific MDA epitopes. Treatment with either an antioxidant or a regression diet resulted in reduced IK17 binding to vascular lesions. Interestingly, homogenates of IK17-EGFP-expressing larvae bound to MDA-LDL and inhibited MDA-LDL binding to macrophages. Moreover, sustained expression of IK17-EGFP effectively prevented HCD-induced lipid accumulation in the vascular wall, suggesting that the antibody itself may have therapeutic effects. Thus, we conclude that HCD-fed zebrafish larvae with conditional expression of EGFP-labeled oxidation-specific antibodies afford an efficient method of testing dietary and/or other therapeutic antioxidant strategies that may ultimately be applied to humans.
Midbrain-hindbrain Boundary Patterning and Morphogenesis Are Regulated by Diverse Grainy Head-like 2-dependent Pathways
Development (Cambridge, England). Feb, 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22223680
The isthmic organiser located at the midbrain-hindbrain boundary (MHB) is the crucial developmental signalling centre responsible for patterning mesencephalic and metencephalic regions of the vertebrate brain. Formation and maintenance of the MHB is characterised by a hierarchical program of gene expression initiated by fibroblast growth factor 8 (Fgf8), coupled with cellular morphogenesis, culminating in the formation of the tectal-isthmo-cerebellar structures. Here, we show in zebrafish that one orthologue of the transcription factor grainy head-like 2 (Grhl2), zebrafish grhl2b plays a central role in both MHB maintenance and folding by regulating two distinct, non-linear pathways. Loss of grhl2b expression induces neural apoptosis and extinction of MHB markers, which are rescued by re-expression of engrailed 2a (eng2a), an evolutionarily conserved target of the Grhl family. Co-injection of sub-phenotypic doses of grhl2b and eng2a morpholinos reproduces the apoptosis and MHB marker loss, but fails to substantially disrupt formation of the isthmic constriction. By contrast, a novel direct grhl2b target, spec1, identified by phylogenetic analysis and confirmed by ChIP, functionally cooperates with grhl2b to induce MHB morphogenesis, but plays no role in apoptosis or maintenance of MHB markers. Collectively, these data show that MHB maintenance and morphogenesis are dissociable events regulated by grhl2b through diverse transcriptional targets.
In Vivo Real-time Visualization of Leukocytes and Intracellular Hydrogen Peroxide Levels During a Zebrafish Acute Inflammation Assay
Methods in Enzymology. 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22341223
Following injury, the inflammatory response directs the host immune cells to the wound to maintain tissue integrity and combat pathogens. The recruitment of immune cells to inflammatory sites is achieved through the establishment of a variety of signal gradients. Using a zebrafish embryo injury model, it was recently demonstrated that, upon injury, cells at the wound margin rapidly produce hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) which serves as an early paracrine signal to leukocytes. This chapter provides a method for performing in vivo time-lapse fluorescence microscopy to visualize leukocyte behaviors and wound-produced H(2)O(2) simultaneously in single zebrafish embryos during an acute inflammatory response. Protocols are included for inducing a robust, reproducible acute inflammatory response, for rapidly mounting immobilized embryos for time-lapse imaging, and for computing ratiometric data from the images of embryos expressing the genetically encoded H(2)O(2) sensor fluorophore HyPer. General issues to consider when designing multichannel fluorescent imaging are discussed, including particular considerations to note when monitoring intracellular H(2)O(2) concentration dynamics using HyPer.
Methods in Enzymology. 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22341237
Fluorescent transgenes with leukocyte-restricted expression have been essential to recent studies using zebrafish models of inflammation and the innate immune response. Many of the experiments performed using these models involve quantifying changes in the number of fluorescent leukocytes. Here, we describe a tool for deriving a quantitative variable proportional to fluorescent leukocyte numbers from single-plane fluorescent digital images of whole live embryos. The parameter, called "Leukocyte units," provides reliable values linearly proportional to actual leukocyte numbers in the range 50-400 leukocytes/embryo, and its performance at higher leukocyte densities remains linear. Its usefulness is demonstrated by scoring changes in leukocyte numbers following perturbation of a characterized leukocyte specification pathway.