Danio rerio, a small teleost commonly known as zebrafish, has emerged as a powerful model organism for studying a wide variety of human diseases over the last few decades due to its small size, high fecundity, and genetic and genomic similarity to humans. Especially phenotype-based zebrafish testing, the so-called “zebrafish screening”, has been actively utilized to identify drug target molecules and therapeutic compounds in combination with various high-throughput technological innovations, such as high-content imager, large-scale behavior analysis, robotics, and bioinformatics.
This Center intended to perform and construct zebrafish screening from broader perspectives, ranging from the creation of human diseases models, and technologies harnessing these as a model organism.
Director. Yasuhito Shimada, M.D., Ph.D.
Dept. Integrative Pharmacology, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Japan.
We developed diet-induced obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus models in zebrafish for the first time. We have performed drug screening using these models and are now testing them with mouse models. Additionally, we are currently attempting to create other new disease models related to metabolic syndrome.
We performed drug screening using cultured cancer cells and zebrafish xenografts, and then tested them with mouse models. With regards to the zebrafish xenografts, we tested them with human colon cancer, melanoma, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and so on. Additionally, we are creating a transgenic model of cancer in zebrafish.
Aging is a major social issue of the future. We are using zebrafish to conduct research and development on aging-induced bone loss, skeletal muscle, nerve and locomotion, as well as the removal of senescent cells.
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