Miller, G.W., Truong, L., Barton, C.L., Labut, E.M., Lebold, K.M., Traber, M.G., Tanguay, R.L. (2014) The influences of parental diet and vitamin E intake on the embryonic zebrafish transcriptome. Comparative biochemistry and physiology. Part D, Genomics & proteomics. 10C:22-29.
The composition of the typical commercial diet fed to zebrafish can dramatically vary. By utilizing defined diets we sought to answer two questions: 1) How does the embryonic zebrafish transcriptome change when the parental adults are fed a commercial lab diet compared with a sufficient, defined diet (E+)? 2) Does a vitamin E-deficient parental diet (E-) further change the embryonic transcriptome? We conducted a global gene expression study using embryos from zebrafish fed a commercial (Lab), an E+ or an E- diet. To capture differentially expressed transcripts prior to onset of overt malformations observed in E- embryos at 48h post-fertilization (hpf), embryos were collected from each group at 36hpf. Lab embryos differentially expressed (p<0.01) 946 transcripts compared with the E+ embryos, and 2656 transcripts compared with the E- embryos. The differences in protein, fat and micronutrient intakes in zebrafish fed the Lab compared with the E+ diet demonstrate that despite overt morphologic consistency, significant differences in gene expression occurred. Moreover, functional analysis of the significant transcripts in the E- embryos suggested perturbed energy metabolism, leading to overt malformations and mortality. Thus, these findings demonstrate that parental zebrafish diet has a direct impact on the embryonic transcriptome.