Utilization of zebrafish for intravital study of eukaryotic pathogen-host interactions

Dev Comp Immunol. 2014 Sep;46(1):108-15. doi: 10.1016/j.dci.2014.01.020. Epub 2014 Feb 1.


Unique imaging tools and practical advantages have made zebrafish a popular model to investigate in vivo host-pathogen interactions. These studies have uncovered details of the mechanisms involved in several human infections. Until recently, studies using this versatile host were limited to viral and prokaryotic pathogens. Eukaryotic pathogens are a diverse group with a major impact on the human and fish populations. The relationships of eukaryote pathogens with their hosts are complex and many aspects remain obscure. The small and transparent zebrafish, with its conserved immune system and amenability to genetic manipulation, make it an exciting model for quantitative study of the core strategies of eukaryotic pathogens and their hosts. The only thing to do now is realize its potential for advancement of biomedical and aquaculture research.

Keywords: Candida; Fungal; Helminth; Host–pathogen; Immunity; Protozoan; Zebrafish.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Eukaryota / classification
  • Eukaryota / cytology
  • Eukaryota / pathogenicity
  • Eukaryota / physiology*
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions*
  • Humans
  • Infections / immunology*
  • Infections / microbiology
  • Infections / parasitology
  • Zebrafish*