In the last 30 years, the zebrafish has become a widely used model organism for research on vertebrate development and disease. Through a powerful combination of genetics and experimental embryology, significant inroads have been made into the regulation of embryonic axis formation, organogenesis, and the development of neural networks. Research with this model has also expanded into other areas, including the genetic regulation of aging, regeneration, and animal behavior. Zebrafish are a popular model because of the ease with which they can be maintained, their small size and low cost, the ability to obtain hundreds of embryos on a daily basis, and the accessibility, translucency, and rapidity of early developmental stages. This primer describes the swift progress of genetic approaches in zebrafish and highlights recent advances that have led to new insights into vertebrate biology.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2016 by the Genetics Society of America.