The International Journal of Developmental Biology

Int. J. Dev. Biol. 65: 475 - 485 (2021)

Vol 65, Issue 7-8-9

Methods to generate and evaluate zebrafish models of human kidney diseases

Open Access | Review | Published: 10 September 2021

Sana Fatma1,2, Usharani Nayak1,3 and Rajeeb K. Swain*,1

1Institute of Life Sciences, Nalco Square, Chandrasekharpur, Bhubaneswar, 2Manipal Academy of Higher Educa-tion, Manipal and 3Regional Centre for Biotechnology, Faridabad, India


Kidney-related disorders affect millions of people worldwide. A survey of chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients showed that the burden of kidney diseases is increasing every year. The global burden of disease (GBD) study 2017 ranked CKD as the 12th leading cause of deaths worldwide. Hence, identification of the causes of kidney diseases, development of accurate diagnostic methods and novel therapeutics is highly relevant. Model organisms that faithfully recapitulate human diseases play important roles in understanding the disease process and provide valuable ground to find their cure. Zebrafish is an excellent model to study the development, pathophysiology and molecular aspects of human kidney diseases. In this review, we summarize various genetic and experimental manipulations that can be carried out in zebrafish to better understand the pathophysiology of human kidney diseases. We suggest that these methods will be helpful in the development of potential therapies to treat kidney diseases.


CKD, AKI, zebrafish model of human kidney diseases, pronephros, renal pathology

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