Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Generation of mutants with developmental defects in zebrafish by ENU mutagenesis

  • 23 Accesses

  • 2 Citations


As a good model for studying early development of vertebrates, zebrafish (Danio rerio) is attracting more and more attention. Following ENU mutagenesis, 320 F2 families were established. Mutants, which showed defects in epiboly, axis, somite, head, and cardiac and blood systems, were identified by observing morphological changes in F3 embryos. So far, 35 mutant lines have been established, the majority of which showed anomalies in axis and somite formation. These mutant lines provide useful genetic resources for cloning of the mutant genes and for studying mechanisms of early development of vertebrate embryos.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. 1.

    Westerfield, M., The Zebrafish Book, Eugene: University of Oregon Press, 1993.

  2. 2.

    Kimmel, C. B., Kane, D. A., Walker, C. et al., A mutation that changes cell movement and cell fate in the zebrafish embryo, Nature, 1989, 337(6205): 358–362.

  3. 3.

    Haffter, P., Granato, M., Brand, M. et al., The identification of genes with unique and essential functions in the development of the zebrafish, Danio rerio. Development, 1996, 123: 1–36.

  4. 4.

    Mullins, M. C., Hammerschmidt, M., Haffter, P. et al., Large-scale mutagenesis in the zebrafish: in search of genes controlling development in a vertebrate, Current Biology, 1994, 4(1): 189–202.

  5. 5.

    van Eeden, F. J., Granato, M., Odenthal, J. et al., Developmental mutant screens in the zebrafish, Methods in Cell Biology, 1999, 60: 21–41.

  6. 6.

    Schilling, T. F., Piotrowski, T., Grandel, H. et al., Jaw and branchial arch mutants in zebrafish I: branchial arches, Development, 1996, 123: 329–344.

  7. 7.

    Ashburner, M., Drosophila, A Laboratory Handbook, Cold Spring Harbor, NY: Cold Spring Harbor Press, 1989, 299–418.

  8. 8.

    Kane, D. A., Maischein, H. M., Brand, M. et al., The zebrafish early arrest mutants, Development, 1996, 123: 57–66.

  9. 9.

    Zhao, J., Cao, Y., Zhao, C. T. et al., An SP1-like transcription factor Spr2 acts downstream of Fgf signaling to mediate mesoderm induction, EMBO Journal, 2003, 22(22): 6078–6088.

  10. 10.

    Cao, Y., Zhao, J., Sun, Z. H. et al., fgfl7b, a novel member of Fgf family, helps patterning zebrafish embryos, Dev. Biol., 2004, 271(1): 130–143.

  11. 11.

    Li, M., Cao, Y., Zhao, Z. X. et al., Characterization and expression pattern of pouIIl, a novel class II POU gene in zebrafish, Chinese Science Bulletin, 2001, 46(18): 1523–1527.

  12. 12.

    Li, M., Su, Y., Meng, A. M., Induction of cranial and posterior trunk neural crest by exogenous retinoic acid in zebrafish, Chinese Science Bulletin, 2002, 47(13): 1105–1108.

  13. 13.

    Zhang, L. X., Zhou, H., Su, Y. et al., Zebrafish Dpr2 inhibits mesoderm induction by promoting lysosomal degradation of Nodal receptors, Science, 2004, 306: 114–117.

  14. 14.

    Dosch, R., Wagner, D. S., Mintzer, K. A. et al., Maternal control of vertebrate development before the midblastula transition: Mutants from the zebrafish I, Dev. Cell, 2004, 6(6): 771–780.

  15. 15.

    Wagner, D. S., Dosch, R., Mintzer, K. A. et al., Maternal control of development at the midblastula transition and beyond: Mutants from the zebrafish II, Dev. Cell, 2004, 6(6): 781–790.

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Anming Meng.

About this article

Cite this article

Jin, P., Tian, T., Sun, Z. et al. Generation of mutants with developmental defects in zebrafish by ENU mutagenesis. Chin.Sci.Bull. 49, 2154–2158 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03185782

Download citation


  • zebrafish
  • ENU mutagenesis
  • mutant
  • screening