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Zebrafish as a New Tool in Heart Preservation Research

Center for Engineering in Medicine and Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 2114, USA
Shriners Hospitals for Children, Boston, MA 2114, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Mathilda Mommersteeg
J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2021, 8(4), 39;
Received: 11 March 2021 / Revised: 5 April 2021 / Accepted: 7 April 2021 / Published: 8 April 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Zebrafish Heart Development, Regeneration, and Disease Modelling)
Heart transplantation became a reality at the end of the 1960s as a life-saving option for patients with end-stage heart failure. Static cold storage (SCS) at 4–6 °C has remained the standard for heart preservation for decades. However, SCS only allows for short-term storage that precludes optimal matching programs, requires emergency surgeries, and results in the unnecessary discard of organs. Among the alternatives seeking to extend ex vivo lifespan and mitigate the shortage of organs are sub-zero or machine perfusion modalities. Sub-zero approaches aim to prolong cold ischemia tolerance by deepening metabolic stasis, while machine perfusion aims to support metabolism through the continuous delivery of oxygen and nutrients. Each of these approaches hold promise; however, complex barriers must be overcome before their potential can be fully realized. We suggest that one barrier facing all experimental efforts to extend ex vivo lifespan are limited research tools. Mammalian models are usually the first choice due to translational aspects, yet experimentation can be restricted by expertise, time, and resources. Instead, there are instances when smaller vertebrate models, like the zebrafish, could fill critical experimental gaps in the field. Taken together, this review provides a summary of the current gold standard for heart preservation as well as new technologies in ex vivo lifespan extension. Furthermore, we describe how existing tools in zebrafish research, including isolated organ, cell specific and functional assays, as well as molecular tools, could complement and elevate heart preservation research. View Full-Text
Keywords: heart preservation; heart transplantation; regenerative medicine; zebrafish heart preservation; heart transplantation; regenerative medicine; zebrafish
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MDPI and ACS Style

Da Silveira Cavalcante, L.; Tessier, S.N. Zebrafish as a New Tool in Heart Preservation Research. J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 2021, 8, 39.

AMA Style

Da Silveira Cavalcante L, Tessier SN. Zebrafish as a New Tool in Heart Preservation Research. Journal of Cardiovascular Development and Disease. 2021; 8(4):39.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Da Silveira Cavalcante, Luciana; Tessier, Shannon N. 2021. "Zebrafish as a New Tool in Heart Preservation Research" J. Cardiovasc. Dev. Dis. 8, no. 4: 39.

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