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Development of in-vitro culture and cryopreservation protocol for zebrafish (Danio rerio) ovarian tissue fragmentsCryopreservation of fish ovarian tissue fragments can be a viable alternative to cryopreservation of oocytes and embryos. The ability to cryopreserve both maternal and paternal gametes would provide a reliable source of fish genetic material for scientific and aquaculture purposes. The main aim of the present study was to develop an in-vitro culture protocol and cryopreservation protocol for zebrafish ovarian tissue fragments. In-vitro culture protocol for the tissue fragments containing stage I and stage II follicles were developed and the growth assessment of follicles were evaluated using biomarkers. To develop the cryopreservation protocol using control slow cooling method, the effect on freezing medium, cryoprotectants and cooling rate on the tissue fragments were investigated. The in-vitro culture experiments showed that L-15 medium (pH 9) containing 100mIU/ml FSH along with 20% FBS was effective for tissue fragments containing stage I and II follicles to grow in-vitro. The growth of the ovarian follicle stages was confirmed by the level of expression of p450aromA and vtg1 gene. The optimal cryopreservation protocol for the ovarian tissue fragments was found as 2M methanol+ 20%FBS in 90% L-15 medium with the cooling rate of 4°C/min. Although the highest survival rate obtained for stage II follicles within the fragments was 68.2±1.9% and stage I follicles within the fragments was 55.4±2.3% using TB staining, it showed a significant decrease in their ATP levels. This is the first study carried out on the zebrafish ovarian tissue fragments. Study on cryopreservation of the ovarian tissue fragments and development of the in-vitro culture protocol and use of biomarkers for the ovarian tissue fragments were reported here for the first time. The outcomes of this study have provided useful information for future cryopreservation protocol development.