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Inspired by the growing prominence of the zebrafish model in biomedical research, EuFishBioMed ( and ZF-HEALTH ( recently joined forces to organise a meeting with the primary aim of forging collaborations between the established ‘zebrafish community’ and newcomers that hope the model will shed light on unanswered questions in their disease area. The 3-day meeting, ‘Zebrafish Models in Translational Medicine’, which was co-sponsored by Disease Models & Mechanisms (DMM), was held in a small town in the outskirts of Paris (Gif-sur-Yvette). With no more than 100 participants, opportunities for networking were plentiful.

A Model For Life

Liz Patton is a Senior Lecturer at the MRC Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, University of Edinburgh, where she leads a research group whose goal is to understand melanocyte and melanoma development. Early on in her research career, Liz investigated cell cycle regulation in yeast and the implications for cancer, but now primarily exploits the zebrafish model to identify new pathways and therapeutic compounds relevant to melanoma. In this interview, Liz recalls some of her most exciting breakthroughs to date, discusses the advantages of zebrafish as a disease model and provides her perspectives on the current challenges in cancer research.

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