Regenerative responses after mild heart injuries for cardiomyocyte proliferation in zebrafish

Junji Itou, Ryutaro Akiyama, Steve Pehoski, Xiaodan Yu, Hiroko Kawakami, Yasuhiko Kawakami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: The zebrafish heart regenerates after various severe injuries. Common processes of heart regeneration are cardiomyocyte proliferation, activation of epicardial tissue, and neovascularization. In order to further characterize heart regeneration processes, we introduced milder injuries and compared responses to those induced by ventricular apex resection, a widely used injury method. We used scratching of the ventricular surface and puncturing of the ventricle with a fine tungsten needle as injury-inducing techniques. Results: Scratching the ventricular surface induced subtle cardiomyocyte proliferation and responses of the epicardium. Endothelial cell accumulation was limited to the surface of the heart. Ventricular puncture induced cardiomyocyte proliferation, endocardial and epicardial activation, and neo-vascularization, similar to the resection method. However, the degree of the responses was milder, correlating with milder injury. Sham operation induced epicardial aldh1a2 expression but not tbx18 and WT1. Conclusions: Puncturing the ventricle induces responses equivalent to resection at milder degrees in a shorter time frame and can be used as a simple injury model. Scratching the ventricle did not induce heart regeneration and can be used for studying wound responses to epicardium.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1477-1486
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental Dynamics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Copyright 2015 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Cardiomyocytes
  • Endothelial cells
  • Epicardial cells
  • Heart
  • Regeneration
  • Zebrafish


Dive into the research topics of 'Regenerative responses after mild heart injuries for cardiomyocyte proliferation in zebrafish'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this