About Zebrafish

While a fish species may not seem a likely research tool for modelling human diseases, the zebrafish is very similar genetically to mammals. Critically, it has all the same genes that cause cancer and developmental disorders in humans.

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As a model biological system, the zebrafish has many advantages for scientists. With a genome that has been fully sequenced, it has easily observable and testable developmental behaviours. Its embryonic development is very rapid, and its embryos are relatively large, robust, and transparent, and able to develop outside their mother.

Zebrafish are native to the Himalayan region, however these beautiful fish are more commonly seen in pet shops where they are sold as a popular aquarium fish, sometimes referred to as Zebra Danio.

Read more about the Zebrafish natural history, their contributions to science, and other information using the links below.