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J Vis Exp. 2015 Aug 30;(102):e53272. doi: 10.3791/53272.

Repeated Blood Collection for Blood Tests in Adult Zebrafish.

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Department of Translational Medical Science, Graduate School of Medicine, Mie University;
Department of Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology, Pharmacogenomics, and Pharmacoinformatics, Graduate School of Medicine, Mie University.
Department of Translational Medical Science, Graduate School of Medicine, Mie University.


Repeated blood collection is one of the most common techniques performed on laboratory animals. However, a non-lethal protocol for blood collection from zebrafish has not been established. The previous methods for blood collection from zebrafish are lethal, such as lateral incision, decapitation and tail ablation. Thus we have developed a novel "repeated" blood collection method, and present here a detailed protocol outlining this procedure. This method is minimally invasive and results in a very low mortality rate (2.3%) for zebrafish, thus enabling repeated blood sampling from the same individual. The maximum volume of blood sampling is dependent on body weight of the fish. The volume for repeated blood sampling at intervals should be ≤0.4% of body weight every week or ≤1% every 2 weeks, which were evaluated by measurements of blood hemoglobin. Additionally, hemoglobin, fasting blood glucose, plasma triacylglycerol (TG) and total cholesterol levels in male and female adult zebrafish were measured. We also applied this method to investigate the dysregulation of glucose metabolism in diet-induced obesity. This blood collection method will allow many applications, including glucose and lipid metabolism and hematological studies, which will increase the use of zebrafish as a human disease model organism.

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