The growing use of zebrafish as models of human development and disease requires some standardization in the field. In 2018, the NIH held a workshop entitled “Defined Reference Diets for Zebrafish and Other Aquatic Biomedical Research Models: Needs and Challenges”. One of the take-home messages from this workshop was the need to use defined diets so that the zebrafish research community would be able to easily control and modify the diet, repeat studies and compare data across laboratories.
To help in that effort, we have, with valuable input from Dr. Stephen Watts from UAB, formulated and produced a purified ingredient zebrafish diet called Z10001.19D, the formula for which can be found here. At the CRO, ZeClinics, the diet was fed to zebrafish at 21 days post fertilization for 16 weeks and the data from this study can be found here. We feel this diet is a good starting point for a ‘base’ diet for zebrafish while at the same time understanding that, as in any field, as new data emerges it may be necessary to modify the formula in order to expand its usefulness.
Such data can come from the zebrafish research community. We invite you to evaluate this diet (and modifications of it) under different conditions while studying your phenotypes of choice. We look forward to discussing how using a purified ingredient diet could help in your next zebrafish study.