Imaging heart formation and function in zebrafish

Didier Stainier’s group investigates questions related to organogenesis including cell differentiation, tissue morphogenesis, organ homeostasis and function, as well as organ regeneration. In particular, they study these questions in zebrafish and utilize both forward and reverse genetic approaches, and aim to dissect cellular processes using high-resolution live imaging. Zebrafish, Danio rerio, offers unique advantages as a vertebrate genetic system and is also ideal for embryological studies. The zebrafish heart is accessible for continued observation and manipulation at all stages of development and offers single cell resolution of its components. Through several genome-wide screens in zebrafish, they have identified a large number of mutations that affect heart formation and function.