Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Colby Access Only)


Colby College. Biology Dept.


Lynn Hannum


Previous research has shown that numerous mammalian immunological functions are inhibited by exposure to ethanol. However, no previous research has examined the effects of ethanol on the immune activity of zebrafish. In this study, the effects of acute ethanol exposure on the zebrafish innate immune system’s ability to perform phagocytosis were evaluated. Ethanol exposed zebrafish phagocytes were mixed with pHrodo E. coli and analyzed via FACS. It was found that acute ethanol exposure increases the phagocytic capabilities of kidney derived neutrophils and of spleen derived macrophages. These effects did not extend to leukocytes interacting with opsonized pathogens, suggesting that it is uniquely affecting the pattern recognition receptor mechanism of phagocytosis activation.


Full-text download restricted to Colby College campus only.


Zebrafish, Ethanol, Alcohol, Phagocytosis