Melatonin mitigates neomycin-induced hair cell injury in zebrafish

Kyoung Ho Oh, Yoon Chan Rah, Kyu Ho Hwang, Seung Hoon Lee, Soon Young Kwon, Jae Hyung Cha, June Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Context: Ototoxicity due to medications, such as aminoglycosides, is irreversible, and free radicals in the inner ear are assumed to play a major role. Because melatonin has an antioxidant property, we hypothesize that it might mitigate hair cell injury by aminoglycosides. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate whether melatonin has an alleviative effect on neomycin-induced hair cell injury in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Methods: Various concentrations of melatonin were administered to 5-day post-fertilization zebrafish treated with 125 μM neomycin for 1 h. Surviving hair cells within four neuromasts were compared with that of a control group. Apoptosis was assessed via terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling assay. The changes of ultrastructure were confirmed using a scanning electron microscope. Results: Melatonin alleviated neomycin-induced hair cell injury in neuromasts (neomycin + melatonin 100 μM: 13.88 ± 0.91 cells, neomycin only: 7.85 ± 0.90 cells; n = 10, p < 0.05) and reduced neomycin-induced apoptosis in the TUNEL assay. In ultrastructural analysis, hair cells within the neuromasts in zebrafish were preserved exposed to 125 μM neomycin and 100 μM melatonin for 1 h in SEM findings. Conclusion: Melatonin is effective in alleviating aminoglycoside-induced hair cell injury in zebrafish. The results of this study demonstrated that melatonin has the potential to reduce apoptosis induced by aminoglycosides in zebrafish.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)390-396
Number of pages7
JournalDrug and Chemical Toxicology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Oct 2


  • aminoglycoside
  • Melatonin
  • ototoxicity
  • protection
  • zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Chemical Health and Safety


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