Zebrafish as a Model System for Human Disease
Adam Rich, Ph.D., an associate professor and Director of Graduate Studies at the Department of Biology at SUNY Brockport, is leading his team in development of a novel zebrafish-based model for human gastrointestinal (GI) motility.
Ultimately, Rich’s goal is to use the zebrafish to develop new treatments for GI motility disorders. Rich’s lab is focused on studying the interstitial cell of Cajal (ICC), a type of interstitial cell found in the gastrointestinal tract that serves as a pacemaker leading to contraction of the smooth muscle. According to the International Society for ICC, research in this field is changing the way we think about the generation of electrical activity in organs containing smooth muscle.
Initial observations have identified that spontaneous muscular contractions and ICC occur simultaneously in the zebrafish GI tract, similar to what is observed in mice and in humans, suggesting that ICC are necessary to regulate GI motility.
Learn more about Adam Rich and the Zebrafish Research Lab at SUNY Brockport.