ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-180518-1
Imaging Myelination In Vivo Using Transparent Animal Models.
Bin, J.M., Lyons, D.A.
Myelination by oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS) and Schwann cells in the peripheral nervous system is essential for nervous system function and health. Despite its importance, we have a relatively poor understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms that regulate myelination in the living animal, particularly in the CNS. This is partly due to the fact that myelination commences around birth in mammals, by which time the CNS is complex and largely inaccessible, and thus very difficult to image live in its intact form. As a consequence, in recent years much effort has been invested in the use of smaller, simpler, transparent model organisms to investigate mechanisms of myelination in vivo
. Although the majority of such studies have employed zebrafish, the Xenopus
tadpole also represents an important complementary system with advantages for investigating myelin biology in vivo
. Here we review how the natural features of zebrafish embryos and larvae and Xenopus
tadpoles make them ideal systems for experimentally interrogating myelination by live imaging. We outline common transgenic technologies used to generate zebrafish and Xenopus
that express fluorescent reporters, which can be used to image myelination. We also provide an extensive overview of the imaging modalities most commonly employed to date to image the nervous system in these transparent systems, and also emerging technologies that we anticipate will become widely used in studies of zebrafish and Xenopus
myelination in the near future.
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