Human daily activities discharge the heavy metal zinc into the aquatic ecosystem in the form of ions. The impact of long-term low concentration zinc ion exposure on fish behavior is not clear.
Recently, the gene center of Biotechnology Research Office of Freshwater Fisheries Research Center of Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences has taken zebrafish as the research object to carry out research on behavioral changes and immune regulation of zebrafish under the environment polluted by zinc ions, and has made new progress.
The research team evaluated the behavioral and physiological changes of male zebrafish (Danio rerio) after 6 weeks of exposure to 1.0 or 1.5ppm (mg/l) zinc chloride. Zinc exposure led to anxiety behavior in male zebrafish, and changed the social preferences of the two exposure groups. Transcriptome analysis showed that zinc had different effects on immune and neurotransmitter functions in the brain of male zebrafish. Exposure to 1.0ppm zinc chloride will lead to structural immune disorders in the brain, while exposure to 1.5ppm zinc chloride will damage its neurotransmitter glutamate. In the intestinal tract of male zebrafish, zinc will affect the self-renewal of intestinal cells, which may make it lose its defense function. In addition, exposure to 1.5ppm zinc chloride inhibits intestinal immune function and tyrosine metabolism. This study shows that zinc ions in the environment can change the behavior of male zebrafish by regulating neurotransmitters and immune regulatory signals. The relevant paper results”zinc alters behavioral phenotypes, neurotransmitter signatures, and immune homeostasis in male zebrafish (Danio rerio)” were published in the journal Science of the total environment (if=10.753), a regional Journal of environmental toxicology. Dr. Yu Fan of the gene center of the biotechnology research laboratory was the first author, and researcher Xu ran was the corresponding author. Full text website https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.154099 。
This research was supported by the general program of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31872583), the basic business fee of the Academy of Water Sciences (2019jbfz01) and the national key research and development plan (2018yfd0901202).