Hypoxia-Induced Pathological Angiogenesis in Zebrafish
Deregulated angiogenesis is a major underlying cause of many severe diseases including cancer, retinopathy, diabetes, myocardial infarction, and stroke. In these diseases, tissue hypoxia is the main cause of the pathological vascular phenotypes. While the mechanisms behind hypoxia-induced changes in cellular signaling have been extensively studied in vitro, much less is known regarding the effects of hypoxia in physiological or pathological settings in vivo. The highly hypoxia-tolerant zebrafish and glass catfish provide excellent systems for studying the effects of hypoxia on angiogenesis and vascular pathology in vertebrate disease models. Here we present and discuss the benefits and drawbacks in using zebrafish to study basic mechanisms of hypoxia in disease, with special emphasis on the role of angiogenesis and vascular function. Specifically, we will in detail discuss zebrafish models of hypoxia-induced angiogenesis in the retina and tumor, as well as acute hypoxia models using glass catfish, and discuss the usefulness of these models to elucidate key mechanisms behind pathological vascular disruption in retinopathy and cancer. At the end of the chapter we contextualize the hypoxia-induced angiogenesis-mediated zebrafish disease models and discuss the perspectives in using zebrafish for medical research on hypoxia and angiogenesis.
KeywordsAngiogenesis Zebrafish Hypoxia Vasculature Cancer Retinopathy