Development and validation of an automated high-throughput system for zebrafish in vivo screenings

PLoS One. 2012;7(5):e36690. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0036690. Epub 2012 May 15.


The zebrafish is a vertebrate model compatible with the paradigms of drug discovery. The small size and transparency of zebrafish embryos make them amenable for the automation necessary in high-throughput screenings. We have developed an automated high-throughput platform for in vivo chemical screenings on zebrafish embryos that includes automated methods for embryo dispensation, compound delivery, incubation, imaging and analysis of the results. At present, two different assays to detect cardiotoxic compounds and angiogenesis inhibitors can be automatically run in the platform, showing the versatility of the system. A validation of these two assays with known positive and negative compounds, as well as a screening for the detection of unknown anti-angiogenic compounds, have been successfully carried out in the system developed. We present a totally automated platform that allows for high-throughput screenings in a vertebrate organism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical*
  • Heart / drug effects
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic
  • Software
  • Zebrafish / embryology*