Saturday, October 13, 2012

Pic Today 10/13/12


250,000 little zebrafish are helping
Washington University research scientists
study genetic mutations and development,
and in turn understand diseases and
potential cures for birth defects, MS,
cancers and nerve disorders.

It is the transparent embryos in zebrafish
that allows scientists to isolate genes
and see their progression in real time.

St. Louis' Washington University has one
of the world's largest and most modern
zebrafish facilities, with 7,000 tanks, 
a 2,000-tank nursery and robots to feed
its 250,000 residents 8 times a day.

The lab grows and supplies its food and
nutrients for these automated feedings.
Immature zebrafish are fed rotifers (plankton),
while grown zebras dine on brine shrimp.
A plentiful supply of zebrafish eggs
ensures a continued supply of future "lab assistants."

The facility is the envy of researchers 
in labs around the world.

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