Toxicity assessment of 7 anticancer compounds in zebrafish

Xiao Ping Gao, Feng Feng, Xiao Qi Zhang, Xiao Xin Liu, Yu Bin Wang, Jin Xiong She, Zhi Heng He, Ming Fang He

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Toxicity is one of the major reasons for failure in drug development. Zebrafish, as an ideal vertebrate model, could also be used to evaluate drug toxicity. In this study, we aimed to show the predictability and highlight novel findings of toxicity in zebrafish model. Seven anticancer compounds, including triptolide (TP), gambogic acid (GA), mycophenolic acid (MPA), curcumin, auranofin, thalidomide, and taxol, were assessed in zebrafish for their toxicity. Three compounds (GA, TP, and taxol) showed highest acute lethality, with 50% lethal concentration ≈ 1 μmol/L. Missing tails, severe pericardial edema, and enlarged yolk sacs were observed in MPA-treated embryos. The development of pectoral fins was severely disturbed in thalidomide-, GA-, and TP-treated embryos. Bradycardia was observed in MPA- and thalidomide-treated groups. Our findings suggested that the zebrafish are a good model for toxicity assessment of anticancer compounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-105
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Toxicology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • acute toxicity
  • anticancer compounds
  • cardiovascular toxicity
  • developmental toxicity
  • zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology


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