Miller, D.L., and Zhou, W. (2013) A System for Investigation of Biological Effects of Diagnostic Ultrasound on Development of Zebrafish Embryos. Zebrafish. 10(4):459-65.
A system for scanning zebrafish embryos with diagnostic ultrasound was developed for research into possible biological effects during development. Two troughs for holding embryos were formed from agarose in a rectangular dish and separated by an ultrasound absorber. A 4.9 MHz linear array ultrasound probe was positioned to uniformly scan all the embryos at the bottom of one trough, with the other used for controls. Zebrafish embryos were scanned continuously from 10–24 h post fertilization (hpf ) during the segmentation period and gross morphological parameters were measured at 30 hpf, including viability, length, number of visible axons, and the progression of the lateral line primordium (LLP). Our initial tests were encumbered by the thermal effects of probe self-heating, which resulted in accelerated development of the zebrafish embryos. After subsequent optimization, our test revealed a significant retardation of primary motor axons and the migration of the LLP in embryos scanned with ultrasound, which indicated a potential for nonthermal effects on neuronal development. This diagnostic ultrasound exposure system is suitable for further investigation of possible subtle bioeffects, such as perturbation of neuronal migration.
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