Modeling Parkinson’s disease in Zebrafish

Nor H.M. Najib, Yong H. Nies, Syarifah A.S. Abd Halim, Mohamad F. Yahaya, Srijit Das, Wei L. Lim, Seong L. Teoh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders that affects the motor system, and includes cardinal motor symptoms such as resting tremor, cogwheel rigidi-ty, bradykinesia and postural instability. Its prevalence is increasing worldwide due to the increase in life span. Although, two centuries since the first description of the disease, no proper cure with regard to treatment strategies and control of symptoms could be reached. One of the major challenges faced by the researchers is to have a suitable research model. Rodents are the most common PD models used, but no single model can replicate the true nature of PD. In this review, we aim to discuss another animal model, the zebrafish (Danio rerio), which is gaining popularity. Zebrafish brain has all the major structures found in the mammalian brain, with neurotransmitter systems, and it also possesses a functional blood-brain barrier similar to humans. From the perspective of PD research, the zebrafish possesses the ventral diencephalon, which is thought to be homologous to the mammalian substantia nigra. We summarize the various zebrafish models available to study PD, namely chemical-induced and genetic models. The zebrafish can complement the use of other animal models for the mechanistic study of PD and help in the screening of new potential therapeutic compounds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)386-399
Number of pages14
JournalCNS and Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Danio rerio
  • Disease models
  • Neurodegenerative disease
  • Neurotoxins
  • Parkinson’s disease (PD)
  • Transgenic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology


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