Animal models are indispensible in biomedical research and have made tremendous contributions to answer fundamental questions on human biology, disease mechanisms, and to the development of new drugs and diagnostic tools. Due to the limitations of rodent models in translational medicine, tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri chinensis), the closest relative of primates, have attracted increasing attention in modeling human diseases and therapeutic responses. Here we discuss the recent progress in tree shrew biology and the development of tree shrews as human disease models including infectious diseases, metabolic diseases, neurological and psychiatric diseases, and cancers. Meanwhile, the current problems and future perspectives of the tree shrew model are explored.
动物模型在生物医学领域(如回答人体各种重大生物学问题、解析人类疾病机理和新药研发等方面)已经做出了不可替代的巨大贡献。转化医学存在的问题使得树鼩 (Tupaia belangeri chinensis) 实验动物重新得到重视;人类疾病的树鼩模型也再次受到越来越多的关注。该文综述了国内外特别是近年来我国树鼩研究进展, 包括树鼩基础生物学及动物模型方面取得的成绩, 并分析了该领域目前存在的困难和问题, 探讨了未来的一些研究方向。
Keywords: Animal models of human diseases; Experimental animals; Fundamental biology; Tree shrew.