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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Zebrafish phenotyping platform

Establishment of in vivo infectious models (BSL2)

viral and bacterial pathogens
viral and bacterial pathogens

  Zebrafish is now recognized as an emergent used in applied biomedical researches. Beyond its remarkable optical transparency, this small vertebrate provides an ideal, cheap model to support high content screenings of therapeutic molecules in complementary to rodent models. So far, zebrafish larvae contribute to investigate host-pathogen interactions in real time by using high-resolution intravital imaging. Several bacterial and viral disease models have thus been developed taking advantage of the genome editing tools, transgenic lines and mutants available in the zebrafish ressource centers. These studies provided important knowledges for the identification of biomarkers and the development of effective therapeutics against bacterial and viral pathogens in human health and economically important fishes.

The IERP platform contributed to the establishment of fish and human viral infectious models, in collaboration with the immunologists of the Virology and Molecular Immunology (VIM) unit. These researches have resulted in the development of tools for the study of pathogen invasion and antiviral innate immune responses (at the molecular and cellular level). Collaborative projects are underway to set up bacterial models, which will benefit from the available tools of the structure (transgenic lines and morpholinos).

           The platform benefits from a strong local expertise in (fish) virology, bacteriology and immunology and accessibility to L2 laboratorie. We develop innovative strategies to study infectious diseases combining advanced imaging approaches (2-photon imaging, 3d/3d+t microscopy), screening approaches (multi-channel, multi-position fast imaging, data processing), daily monitoring (slowing blood circulation, tissue damage/regeneration, behavioral disorders, ..) and nanotechnologies (for molecule delivery or telemetry). Collaborations can be established to evaluate candidate molecules in advanced screening assays on relevant zebrafish lines for toxicity (craniofacial deformation, neurotoxicity, reproductive system disorders, inflammation), and/or bioactivity (anti-inflammatory effect, anti-infectious …).

                 Services can be provided to :

  • establish novel infectious models (microinjection- infectious disease characterization: clinical signs, survival curve, behavioral deficits)
  • study pathogen invasion (tracking of fluorescent pathogens, injections of pathogenic mutants, screening of anti-infectious candidates ....)
  • characterize host-pathogen interactions (innate immune responses: immune cells dynamic, cytokines expression, tissue damage and regeneration…)
  • conduct functional experiments: gain or loss of functions through mRNA or morpholino injections

                 A collection of pathogens at the service of our academic and industrial partners: viruses, bacterila, prions...

The collaborative research units (INRAE, ANSES, CIRAD) backed by the Emerg'in infrastructure possess an unique collections of viral, bacterial and parasitic pathogens affecting farm animals and humans ( zoonotic agents) in addition to the microbial ressource center CIRM International Center for Microbial Resources for Pathogenic Bacteria (CIRM-BP).