The zebrafish (Danio rerio) is among the most widely used model animals in scientific research. Historically, these fish have been reared in the laboratory using simple methods developed by home aquarists. For laboratories with high demand for breeding and generation turn-over, however, there has been a shift away from this approach towards one that leverages techniques, tools, and feeds from commercial aquaculture to help accelerate growth rates and decrease generation times. While these advances have improved efficiency, the effects of feeding zebrafish diets that are designed to grow disparately related cold-water fish species to market size quickly are not well-understood. To explore the impacts that intensive feeding protocols may have on this species, groups of zebrafish larvae from two different wild-type lines were stocked into treatment tanks at a standard density of 10 fish per liter and were administered either a "high" or "low" food diet for a maximum of 63 days. During their growth phase, the "high" food diet group received at least 8x more rotifers and at least 2x more Artemia than the "low" food diet group. Growth, survival, and reproductive performance (fecundity and viability) were measured in these fish and in their offspring. We found that fish that were fed more grew more rapidly and were able to reproduce earlier than fish that were fed less, but they were also more likely to produce higher proportions of non-viable embryos.
Copyright: © 2022 Adatto et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Photo of Len Zon

The Zon laboratory aims to dissect how assaults to the hematopoietic system cause severe diseases such as leukemias, lymphomas, and anemias. They investigate hematopoietic development and disease using chemical screens, genetic screens, and analysis of novel transgenic lines in zebrafish.

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