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Advances in Hematology
Volume 2012, Article ID 398640, 11 pages
Review Article

Neutrophil Reverse Migration Becomes Transparent with Zebrafish

1Microbiology Doctoral Training Program and Medical Scientist Training Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA
2Department of Pediatrics and Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA

Received 3 February 2012; Accepted 8 May 2012

Academic Editor: Christopher Hall

Copyright © 2012 Taylor W. Starnes and Anna Huttenlocher. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The precise control of neutrophil-mediated inflammation is critical for both host defense and the prevention of immunopathology. In vivo imaging studies in zebrafish, and more recently in mice, have made the novel observation that neutrophils leave a site of inflammation through a process called neutrophil reverse migration. The application of advanced imaging techniques to the genetically tractable, optically transparent zebrafish larvae was critical for these advances. Still, the mechanisms underlying neutrophil reverse migration and its effects on the resolution or priming of immune responses remain unclear. Here, we review the current knowledge of neutrophil reverse migration, its potential roles in host immunity, and the live imaging tools that make zebrafish a valuable model for increasing our knowledge of neutrophil behavior in vivo.