Animal models of human neurodegenerative disease have been investigated for several decades. In recent years, zebrafish (Danio rerio
) and medaka (Oryzias latipes
) have become popular in pathogenic and therapeutic studies about human neurodegenerative diseases due to their small size, the optical clarity of embryos, their fast development, and their suitability to large-scale therapeutic screening. Following the emergence of a new generation of molecular biological technologies such as reverse and forward genetics, morpholino, transgenesis, and gene knockout, many human neurodegenerative disease models, such as Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, and Alzheimer’s, were constructed in zebrafish and medaka. These studies proved that zebrafish and medaka genes are functionally conserved in relation to their human homologues, so they exhibit similar neurodegenerative phenotypes to human beings. Therefore, fish are a suitable model for the investigation of pathologic mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases and for the large-scale screening of drugs for potential therapy. In this review, we summarize the studies in modelling human neurodegenerative diseases in zebrafish and medaka in recent years.
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