top of page
Immunity, Infection and the Zebrafish Clock
Immunity, Infection and the Zebrafish Clock

Raina E. Sacksteder and Jacqueline M. Kimmey

Infection and Immunity. 

August 16, 2022


Circadian clocks are universally used to coordinate biological processes with the Earth's 24-h solar day and are critical for the health and environmental success of an organism. Circadian rhythms in eukaryotes are driven by a cell-intrinsic transcription-translation feedback loop that controls daily oscillations in gene expression which regulate diverse physiological functions. Substantial evidence now exists demonstrating that immune activation and inflammatory responses during infection are under circadian control, however, the cellular mechanisms responsible for this are not well understood. The zebrafish (Danio rerio) is a powerful model organism to study vertebrate circadian biology and immune function. Zebrafish contain homologs of mammalian circadian clock genes which, to our current knowledge, function similarly to impart timekeeping ability. Consistent with studies in mammalian models, several studies in fish have now demonstrated a bidirectional relationship between the circadian clock and inflammation: the circadian clock regulates immune activity, and inflammation can alter circadian rhythms. This review summarizes our current understanding of the molecular mechanisms of the zebrafish clock and the bi-directional relationship between the circadian clock and inflammation in fish.

bacteria; circadian; clock; cry; immunity; infectious disease; light; melatonin; per2; zebrafish.

bottom of page