The world is ever-changing, our science and technology are becoming more advanced and accurate, but there are some things that we haven’t quite found a viable alternative for – such as lab animal testing for various research purposes. Animals, such as mammals and fish, have been utilized in the medical and scientific field for a very long time hence why you always see pictures of those cute little lab mice in stock photos all the time. They serve as critical research components to enable researchers to create and develop pharmaceutical drugs for us humans that more often than not, save our lives. Although major improvements have been made in regard to our standards, regulations, protocols, techniques, housing, and husbandry, it testing animals remains a hot topic for debate and by nature, it will continue to be a bioethical issue.
With more eyes and emphasis on animal welfare (rightfully so) and how institutions across the board are treated their lab animals during testing processes, regulating bodies and the overall scientific community are actively trying to develop alternatives whenever and wherever possible. Sometimes the use of animals is unavoidable in studies that require certain types of testing, in which totally replacing (or banning) animal models in biomedical research isn’t really possible however there is a general consensus that reevaluating and refining our practices should be a priority moving forward.
In efforts to refine and improve bioethical mindset and rules, the 3R Principles is a philosophy that is employed and followed throughout the industry. The 3R’s stand for Replace, Reduce, and Refine. Essentially, it’s the idea that collectively we should try to minimize the use of animals and when they absolutely have to be used, let’s try to minimize their potential suffering as much as possible.
Zebrafish have become (and are continuing to become) an appealing choice for many biomedical research studies. In many cases, these small fish can serve as an alternative to using mammals in testing and when looking at the pros and cons to zebrafish, they seem to possess a lot of advantages. One main benefit being, in relation to the 3Rs, is that regulatory bodies like the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC) and other agencies consider up to 5 days post-fertilization embryos as a non-animal model based on extensive research (which continues to be ongoing).
As science and technology exponentially become more sophisticated, our dependence on animal testing is more than likely to decrease, with perhaps more synthetic substitutions and methodologies becoming more effective. For the time being, non-feeding zebrafish larvae act as a preferred choice for many existing and emerging laboratories and research groups looking to advance their biomedical studies in the most ethical, sustainable, and proper way.
One of our missions and goals as a company is to provide the best housing, filtration, and environmental parameters that we can for zebrafish in a laboratory/facility setting. We’ve designed our own rack and tank system, in which we dialed in every feature in effort to create the most effective, efficient, and easy to use system to care for your zebrafish colonies. In addition to housing, we have also created a new vertical, space-saving, filtration skid that is equipped with a system control panel and the highest quality filtration components to maintain the best water quality for your fish.
Furthermore, one of the main aspects of our business is Danio Care – providing service, support, and care plans at multiple levels to zebrafish users around the world. This includes us traveling to clients in-person to provide assistance (installation, repair, maintenance, upgrades, etc.). We’re experienced in all areas of zebrafish husbandry, so whether your project is big or small, we can handle it.
At Danio Lab, we always keep the 3Rs Principle in mind, in relation to the work we do and the products we create or sell. Our work has a direct impact on the overall health of these fish, so we try to maximize the most optimal living conditions we can by simulating their water quality, feed, etc to the natural, wild environment of zebrafish. Furthermore, we aim towards designing products that minimize stress and create the easiest experience for users to do their research while the fish thrive in their housing environment and life support system.
A step towards Reduction can be reducing the need to use animals that might feel pain/distress more intensely, such as mammals and (if animal testing is necessary). We recognize zebrafish are one of the better alternative animal models, and encourage scientists, managers, and technicians to use our racks/tanks, filtration, and services, which we feel is the best choice for maintaining high-quality environmental conditions – therefore maximizing zebrafish health in captivity. This plays into the Refinement piece, where we are constantly innovating, advising, and guiding people in the proper ways to refine their systems and procedures that improve workflow, system performance, and inevitably create superior (or the best possible) living conditions for zebrafish.
Danio Housing – Zebrafish IVT Rack & Tank Systems
Danio Care – Service & Support
Danio Nutrition – Diets & Dispensing
Danio Core – Insourcing & Compliance
Danio Health – Diagnostics & Testing