ZFIN ID: ZDB-LAB-970409-86
Steiner Lab
PI/Director: Steiner, Lisa
Co-PI / Senior
Danilova, Nadia
Contact Person: Steiner, Lisa
Email: lsteiner@mit.edu
Address: Department of Biology Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 77 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02139 USA
Country: United States
Phone: (617) 253-6704
Fax: (617) 253-8699
Line Designation: None assigned


The long-term interest of our lab has been the evolution and development of the immune system. Our current goal is to understand the early development of cells in the lymphocytic lineage and of the organs in which these cells differentiate. Despite a wealth of information about later stages, little is known about early steps in the differentiation of lymphocytes and the thymic primordium, including commitment to the lymphocytic lineages and homing of lymphocytic progenitors to the thymus. We have developed a visual assay for formation of the thymus, which we are currently using to screen mutagenized fish for defects in thymus and thymocyte development. In addition, we are investigating the genomics structure of immunoglobulin genes as well as the changes involved in the formation of the mature adaptive immune system, more specifically V(D)J recombination and somatic hypermutation and their regulation during development.


Danilova, N., Wilkes, M., Bibikova, E., Youn, M.Y., Sakamoto, K.M., Lin, S. (2018) Innate immune system activation in zebrafish and cellular models of Diamond Blackfan Anemia. Scientific Reports. 8:5165
Bibikova, E., Youn, M.Y., Danilova, N., Ono-Uruga, Y., Konto-Ghiorghi, Y., Ochoa, R., Narla, A., Glader, B., Lin, S., Sakamoto, K.M. (2014) TNF-mediated inflammation represses GATA1 and activates p38 MAP kinase in RPS19-deficient hematopoietic progenitors. Blood. 124(25):3791-8
Danilova, N., Bibikova, E., Covey, T.M., Nathanson, D., Dimitrova, E., Konto, Y., Lindgren, A., Glader, B., Radu, C.G., Sakamoto, K.M., Lin, S. (2014) The role of DNA damage response in zebrafish and cellular models of Diamond Blackfan Anemia. Disease models & mechanisms. 7(7):895-905
Zhang, Y., Morimoto, K., Danilova, N., Zhang, B., and Lin, S. (2012) Zebrafish Models for Dyskeratosis Congenita Reveal Critical Roles of p53 Activation Contributing to Hematopoietic Defects through RNA Processing. PLoS One. 7(1):e30188
Zimmerman, A.M., Moustafa, F.M., Romanowski, K.E., and Steiner, L.A. (2011) Zebrafish immunoglobulin IgD: Unusual exon usage and quantitative expression profiles with IgM and IgZ/T heavy chain isotypes. Molecular immunology. 48(15-16):2220-3
Danilova, N., Sakamoto, K.M., and Lin, S. (2011) Ribosomal protein L11 mutation in zebrafish leads to haematopoietic and metabolic defects. British journal of haematology. 152(2):217-228
Danilova, N., Kumagai, A., and Lin, J. (2010) p53 Upregulation Is a Frequent Response to Deficiency of Cell-Essential Genes. PLoS One. 5(12):e15938
Danilova, N., Sakamoto, K.M., and Lin, S. (2008) Ribosomal protein S19 deficiency in zebrafish leads to developmental abnormalities and defective erythropoiesis through activation of p53 protein family. Blood. 112(13):5228-5237
Danilova, N., Sakamoto, K.M., and Lin, S. (2008) Role of p53 family in birth defects: Lessons from zebrafish. Birth defects research. Part C, Embryo today : reviews. 84(3):215-227
Zimmerman, A.M., Yeo, G., Howe, K., Maddox, B.J., and Steiner, L.A. (2008) Immunoglobulin light chain (IgL) genes in zebrafish: Genomic configurations and inversional rearrangements between (V(L)-J(L)-C(L)) gene clusters. Developmental and comparative immunology. 32(4):421-434
Beetz, S., Diekhoff, D., and Steiner, L.A. (2007) Characterization of terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase and polymerase mu in zebrafish. Immunogenetics. 59(9):735-744
Danilova, N. (2005) Analysis of recombination signal sequences in zebrafish. Molecular immunology. 42(10):1243-1249
Danilova, N., Bussmann, J., Jekosch, K., and Steiner, L.A. (2005) The immunoglobulin heavy-chain locus in zebrafish: identification and expression of a previously unknown isotype, immunoglobulin Z. Nature immunology. 6(3):295-302
Danilova, N., Visel, A., Willett, C.E., and Steiner, L.A. (2004) Expression of the winged helix/forkhead gene, foxn4, during zebrafish development. Dev. Brain Res.. 153(1):115-119
Danilova, N., Hohman, V.S., Sacher, F., Ota, T., Willett, C.E., and Steiner, L.A. (2004) T cells and the thymus in developing zebrafish. Developmental and comparative immunology. 28(7-8):755-767
Danilova, N., Krupnik, V.E., Sugden, D., and Zhdanova, I.V. (2004) Melatonin stimulates cell proliferation in zebrafish embryo and accelerates its development. FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 18(6):751-753
Shen, C.H. and Steiner, L.A. (2004) Genome structure and thymic expression of an endogenous retrovirus in zebrafish. Journal of virology. 78(2):899-911
Steiner, L.A., Willett, C.E., and Danilova, N. (2004) The immune system in zebrafish. In Biology of B Cells, 3rd edition, Alt, F.W., Honjo, T., and Neuberger, M.S., eds., in press.
Danilova, N. and Steiner, L.A. (2002) B cells develop in the zebrafish pancreas. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 99(21):13711-13716
Willett, C.E., Kawasaki, H., Amemiya, C.T., Lin, S., and Steiner, L.A. (2001) Ikaros expression as a marker for lymphoid progenitors during zebrafish development. Developmental Dynamics : an official publication of the American Association of Anatomists. 222(4):694-698
Zhdanova, I.V., Wang, S.Y., Leclair, O.U., and Danilova, N.P. (2001) Melatonin promotes sleep-like state in zebrafish(1). Brain research. 903(1-2):263-268
Danilova, N., Hohman, V.S., Kim, E.H., and Steiner, L.A. (2000) Immunoglobulin variable-region diversity in the zebrafish. Immunogenetics. 52(1-2):81-91
Willett, C.E., Zapata, A.G., Hopkins, N.A., and Steiner, L.A. (1997) Expression of zebrafish rag genes during early development identifies the thymus. Developmental Biology. 182(2):331-341
Willett, C.E., Cherry, J.J., and Steiner, L.A. (1997) Characterization and expression of the recombination activating genes (rag1 and rag2) of zebrafish. Immunogenetics. 45(6):394-404
Greenhalgh, P. and Steiner, L.A. (1995) Recombination activating gene 1 (Rag1) in zebrafish and shark. Immunogenetics. 41:54-55