Although the zebrafish (Danio rerio) has been widely utilized as a model organism for several decades, there is little information available on physiological variation underlying genetic variation among the most commonly used inbred strains. This study evaluated growth performance using physiological and molecular markers of growth in response to fasting in six commonly used zebrafish strains [AB, TU, TL, SJA, WIK, and petstore (PET) zebrafish]. Fasting resulted in a standard decrease in whole blood glucose levels, a typical vertebrate glucose metabolism pattern, in AB, PET, TL, and TU zebrafish strains. Alternatively, fasting did not affect glucose levels in SJA and WIK zebrafish strains. Similarly, fasting had no effect on myostatin mRNA levels in AB, PET, TU, and WIK zebrafish strains, but decreased myostatin-1 and - 2 mRNA levels in SJA zebrafish. Consistent with previous work, fasting increased myostatin-2 mRNA levels in TL zebrafish. These data demonstrate that variation is present in growth performance between commonly used inbred strains of zebrafish. These data can help future research endeavors by highlighting the attributes of each strain with regard to growth performance so that the most fitting strain may be utilized. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.