Pyati, U.J., Look, A.T., and Hammerschmidt, M. (2007) Zebrafish as a powerful vertebrate model system for in vivo studies of cell death. Seminars in Cancer Biology. 17(2):154-165.
Understanding and manipulating cell death pathways are critical to our ability to treat human degenerative diseases and cancer. The zebrafish Danio rerio, a common aquatic pet, has evolved as a powerful tool for the discovery of genes regulating cellular suicide both during normal vertebrate development and after genetic or environmental insult. In this review, we describe the techniques that can be applied to studying cell death in zebrafish as well as highlighting what has been discovered so far. Finally, we discuss future perspectives in the field and how they relate to human disease.