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Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis. 2019 Mar 1;1865(3):620-633. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2018.12.015. Epub 2018 Dec 26.

Zebrafish disease models in hematology: Highlights on biological and translational impact.

Author information

1
Unit of Biotechnology, Department of Molecular and Translational Medicine, University of Brescia, Italy. Electronic address: daniela.zizioli@unibs.it.
2
CIBIO, Center for Integrative Biology, University of Trento, Italy.
3
Unit of Biotechnology, Department of Molecular and Translational Medicine, University of Brescia, Italy.
4
Unit of Blood Disease and Stem Cell Transplantation, Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, ASST-Spedali Civili di Brescia, Italy.
5
Unit of Biology and Genetic, Department of Molecular and Translational Medicine, University of Brescia, Italy.
6
Unit of Biotechnology, Department of Molecular and Translational Medicine, University of Brescia, Italy; Clinical Chemistry Laboratory, ASST, Spedali Civili di Brescia, Italy.
7
Unit of Oncology and Immunology, Department of Molecular and Translational Medicine, University of Brescia, Italy.
8
Unit of Blood Disease and Stem Cell Transplantation, Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, ASST-Spedali Civili di Brescia, Italy. Electronic address: domenico.russo@unibs.it.

Abstract

Zebrafish (Danio rerio) has proven to be a versatile and reliable in vivo experimental model to study human hematopoiesis and hematological malignancies. As vertebrates, zebrafish has significant anatomical and biological similarities to humans, including the hematopoietic system. The powerful genome editing and genome-wide forward genetic screening tools have generated models that recapitulate human malignant hematopoietic pathologies in zebrafish and unravel cellular mechanisms involved in these diseases. Moreover, the use of zebrafish models in large-scale chemical screens has allowed the identification of new molecular targets and the design of alternative therapies. In this review we summarize the recent achievements in hematological research that highlight the power of the zebrafish model for discovery of new therapeutic molecules. We believe that the model is ready to give an immediate translational impact into the clinic.

KEYWORDS:

Chemical screens; Hematopoiesis; Leukemia models; Xenotransplantation; Zebrafish

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