Nano-Sampling and Reporter Tools to Study Metabolic Regulation in Zebrafish

Thomas Dickmeis, Yi Feng, Maria Caterina Mione, Nikolay Ninov, Massimo Santoro, Herman P. Spaink, Philipp Gut

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In the past years, evidence has emerged that hallmarks of human metabolic disorders can be recapitulated in zebrafish using genetic, pharmacological or dietary interventions. An advantage of modeling metabolic diseases in zebrafish compared to other “lower organisms” is the presence of a vertebrate body plan providing the possibility to study the tissue-intrinsic processes preceding the loss of metabolic homeostasis. While the small size of zebrafish is advantageous in many aspects, it also has shortcomings such as the difficulty to obtain sufficient amounts for biochemical analyses in response to metabolic challenges. A workshop at the European Zebrafish Principal Investigator meeting in Trento, Italy, was dedicated to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of zebrafish to study metabolic disorders. This perspective article by the participants highlights strategies to achieve improved tissue-resolution for read-outs using “nano-sampling” approaches for metabolomics as well as live imaging of zebrafish
expressing fluorescent reporter tools that inform on cellular or subcellular metabolic processes. We provide several examples, including the use of reporter tools to study the heterogeneity of pancreatic beta-cells within their tissue environment. While limitations exist, we believe that with the advent of new technologies and more labs developing methods that can be applied to minimal amounts of tissue or single cells, zebrafish will further increase their utility to study energy metabolism.
Keywords: zebrafish, metabolomics, fluorescent reporter, nano sampling,
Original languageEnglish
JournalFrontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
Volume7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Feb 2019

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