Adrian’s paper “ScreenCube: A 3D Printed System For Rapid and Cost-Effective Chemical Screening in Adult Zebrafish” is now available! Click here for the paper.
Phenotype-based small molecule screens in zebrafish embryos and larvae have been successful in accelerating pathway and therapeutic discovery for diverse biological processes. Yet, the application of chemical screens to adult physiologies has been relatively limited due to additional demands on cost, space, and labor associated with drug administration in adult animals. Here, we present a 3D printed system and methods for intermittent drug dosing that enable rapid and cost-effective chemical administration in adult zebrafish. Using pre-filled screening plates, the system enables dosing of 96 fish in ~3 min, with a tenfold-reduction in drug quantity compared to that used in previous chemical screens in adult zebrafish. We characterize water quality kinetics during immersion in the system, and use these kinetics to rationally design intermittent dosing regimens that result in 100% fish survival. As a demonstration of system fidelity, we show the potential to identify two known chemical inhibitors of adult tail fin regeneration, cyclopamine and dorsomorphin. By developing methods for rapid and cost-effective chemical administration in adult zebrafish, this study expands the potential for small molecule discovery in post-embryonic models of development, disease, and regeneration.