Evaluation of embryotoxicity using the zebrafish model.
The embryonic zebrafish model offers the power of whole-animal investigations (e.g., intact organism, functional homeostatic feedback mechanisms, and intercellular signaling) with the convenience of cell culture (e.g., cost- and time-efficient, minimal infrastructure, small quantities of nanomaterial solutions required). The model system overcomes many of the current limitations in rapid to high-throughput screening of drugs/compounds and casts a broad net to evaluate integrated system effects rapidly. Additionally, it is an ideal platform to follow up with targeted studies aimed at the mechanisms of toxic action. Exposures are carried out in 96-well plates so minimal solution volumes are required for the assessments. Numerous morphological, developmental, and behavioral endpoints can be evaluated noninvasively due to the transparent nature of the embryos.