Zebrafish (what else?)

Smith, Michael MFS3K at hscmail.mcc.virginia.edu
Tue Sep 4 10:06:30 EST 2001

I am putting together a short Advanced Topics in Immunology 
course on the use of zebrafish as a model organism.  I started out 
knowing absolutely nothing about zebrafish and now know a slight 
bit more. The ZFIN site is an excellent resource.

After pouring through the literature I still have a few (OK, a lot) 
questions that I haven't been able to find answers to.  I'm hoping 
someone can provide some of these answers or at least point to 
someone who can.  

Since we are immunologists, obviously we are interest in blood 
cells. I haven't found anything where folks have isolated different 
populations (i.e. T cells, B cells, macrophages) of cells from the 
blood of zebrafish.  Is this technically feasible and where might I 
find some info on it?  Seems like all the papers I can find (Zon's) do 
whole embryo staining.  

With all the great work that has been done identifying genes in 
zebrafish, I've been very surprised that I can't find anything about 
the NF-kB family of transcription factors or members of the Toll-like 
receptor families.  Both have been very extensively studied in 
Drosophila development and are all the rage in folks (like myself) 
studying the innate immune response to bacteria.  Have I just 
missed something or is this a potentially hot new area for studies 
with zebrafish?  

As I said, any insights or pointers would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks a lot.

Best regards,
Mike Smith


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Michael Smith, PhD
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University of Virginia
Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
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