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Papers of the Week

Papers: 7 Oct 2023 - 13 Oct 2023

2023 Oct 06

Biomed Pharmacother



A comprehensive painkillers screening by assessing zebrafish behaviors after caudal fin amputation.


Audira G, Huang JC, Chen KH, Kurnia KA, Vasquez RD, Roldan MJM, Lai YH, Hsiao CD, Yen CY


Recently, the usage of zebrafish for pain studies has increased in the past years, especially due to its robust pain-stimulated behaviors. Fin amputation has been demonstrated to induce a noxious response in zebrafish. However, based on the prior study, although lidocaine, the most used painkiller in zebrafish, has been shown to ameliorate amputated zebrafish behaviors, it still causes some prolonged effects. Therefore, alternative painkillers are always needed to improve the treatment quality of fin-amputated zebrafish. Here, the effects of several analgesics in recovering zebrafish behaviors post-fin amputation were evaluated. From the results, five painkillers were found to have potentially beneficial effects on amputated fish behaviors. Overall, these results aligned with their binding energy level to target proteins of COX-1 and COX-2. Later, based on their sub-chronic effects on zebrafish survivability, indomethacin, and diclofenac were further studied. This combination showed a prominent effect in recovering zebrafish behaviors when administered orally or through waterborne exposure, even with lower concentrations. Next, based on the ELISA in zebrafish brain tissue, although some changes were found in the treated group, no statistical differences were observed in most of the tested biomarkers. However, since heatmap clustering showed a similar pattern between biochemical and behavior endpoints, the minor changes in each biomarker may be sufficient in changing the fish behaviors.