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1.  miR-34c attenuates epithelial-mesenchymal transition and kidney fibrosis with ureteral obstruction 
Scientific Reports  2014;4:4578.
micro RNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that act as posttranscriptional repressors by binding to the 3′-UTR of target mRNAs. On the other hand, mesenchymal-epithelial transition (EMT) and kidney fibrosis is a pathological process of chronic kidney disease (CKD), and its relationship to miRNAs is becoming recognized as a potential target for CKD therapies. To find new miRNAs involved in EMT, we examined miRNA expression in experimental models of EMT and renal epithelialization using microarray, and found that miR-34c attenuates EMT induced by TGF-β in a mouse tubular cell line. To confirm the effects of miR-34c in vivo, we administered the precursor of miR-34c to mice with unilateral ureteral obstruction, and miR-34c decreased kidney fibrosis area and the expression of connective tissue growth factor, α-SMA, collagen type 1, collagen type 3 and fibronectin. In conclusion, our study showed miR-34c attenuates EMT and kidney fibrosis of mice with ureteral obstruction.
PMCID: PMC3974136
2.  The Role of Individual Domains and the Significance of Shedding of ATP6AP2/(pro)renin Receptor in Vacuolar H+-ATPase Biogenesis 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(11):e78603.
The ATPase 6 accessory protein 2 (ATP6AP2)/(pro)renin receptor (PRR) is essential for the biogenesis of active vacuolar H+-ATPase (V-ATPase). Genetic deletion of ATP6AP2/PRR causes V-ATPase dysfunction and compromises vesicular acidification. Here, we characterized the domains of ATP6AP2/PRR involved in active V-ATPase biogenesis. Three forms of ATP6AP2/PRR were found intracellularly: full-length protein and the N- and C-terminal fragments of furin cleavage products, with the N-terminal fragment secreted extracellularly. Genetic deletion of ATP6AP2/PRR did not affect the protein stability of V-ATPase subunits. The extracellular domain (ECD) and transmembrane domain (TM) of ATP6AP2/PRR were indispensable for the biogenesis of active V-ATPase. A deletion mutant of ATP6AP2/PRR, which lacks exon 4-encoded amino acids inside the ECD (Δ4M) and causes X-linked mental retardation Hedera type (MRXSH) and X-linked parkinsonism with spasticity (XPDS) in humans, was defective as a V-ATPase-associated protein. Prorenin had no effect on the biogenesis of active V-ATPase. The cleavage of ATP6AP2/PRR by furin seemed also dispensable for the biogenesis of active V-ATPase. We conclude that the N-terminal ECD of ATP6AP2/PRR, which is also involved in binding to prorenin or renin, is required for the biogenesis of active V-ATPase. The V-ATPase assembly occurs prior to its delivery to the trans-Golgi network and hence shedding of ATP6AP2/PRR would not affect the biogenesis of active V-ATPase.
PMCID: PMC3817224  PMID: 24223829
3.  C-Reactive Protein, High-Molecular-Weight Adiponectin and Development of Metabolic Syndrome in the Japanese General Population: A Longitudinal Cohort Study 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(9):e73430.
To clarify predictive values of C-reactive protein (CRP) and high-molecular-weight (HMW) adiponectin for development of metabolic syndrome.
Research Design and Methods
We conducted a prospective cohort study of Japanese workers who had participated in an annual health checkup in 2007 and 2011. A total of 750 subjects (558 men and 192 women, age 46±8 years) who had not met the criteria of metabolic syndrome and whose CRP and HMW-adiponectin levels had been measured in 2007 were enrolled in this study. Associations between CRP, HMW-adiponectin and development of metabolic syndrome after 4 years were assessed by logistic regression analysis and their predictive values were compared by receiver operating characteristic analysis.
Among 750 subjects, 61 (8.1%) developed metabolic syndrome defined by modified National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP-ATP III) criteria and 53 (7.1%) developed metabolic syndrome defined by Japan Society for the Study of Obesity (JASSO) in 2011. Although CRP and HMW-adiponectin were both significantly correlated with development of metabolic syndrome, multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that HMW-adiponectin but not CRP was associated with metabolic syndrome independently of BMI or waist circumference. Adding these biomarkers to BMI or waist circumference did not improve the predictive value for metabolic syndrome.
Our findings indicate that the traditional markers of adiposity such as BMI or waist circumference remain superior markers for predicting metabolic syndrome compared to CRP, HMW-adiponectin, or the combination of both among the Japanese population.
PMCID: PMC3772031  PMID: 24069195
4.  Past Obesity as well as Present Body Weight Status Is a Risk Factor for Diabetic Nephropathy 
Aims. We analyzed the prevalence of nephropathy according to past body weight status in Japanese subjects with type 2 diabetes because the influence of past obesity on diabetic complications is not certain. Methods. We examined the prevalence of nephropathy in 2927 subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus according to current BMI and maximum BMI in the past. We defined “current obesity” as BMI on hospitalization of 25 or more, “previous obesity” as BMI on hospitalization of less than 25 and self-reported maximum BMI in the past of 25 or more, and “continuously lean” as maximum BMI of less than 25. Results. The prevalence of nephropathy was significantly higher in subjects with current obesity (40.6%) or previous obesity (35.6%) than in those who were continuously lean (24.3%) (P < 0.017). In logistic regression analysis, previous obesity, as well as current obesity, was a significant risk factor for nephropathy, independent of sex, age, disease duration, hypertension, dyslipidemia, HbA1c, and diabetic retinopathy. Conclusions. Obesity in the past, as well as the present body weight status, was a risk factor for diabetic nephropathy.
PMCID: PMC3770043  PMID: 24065991
5.  Effect of Telmisartan or Losartan for Treatment of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: Fatty Liver Protection Trial by Telmisartan or Losartan Study (FANTASY) 
Aim. This study compared the effects of telmisartan and losartan on nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and biochemical markers of insulin resistance in hypertensive NAFLD patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Methods. This was a randomized, open-label, parallel-group comparison of therapy with telmisartan or losartan. Nineteen hypertensive NAFLD patients with type 2 diabetes were randomly assigned to receive telmisartan at a dose of 20 mg once a day (n = 12) or losartan at a dose of 50 mg once a day (n = 7) for 12 months. Body fat area as determined by CT scanning and hepatic fat content based on the liver-to-spleen (L/S) ratio, as well as several parameters of glycemic and lipid metabolism, were compared before and after 12 months. Results. The telmisartan group showed a significant decline in serum free fatty acid (FFA) level (from 0.87 ± 0.26 to 0.59 ± 0.22 mEq/L (mean ± SD), P = 0.005) and a significant increase in L/S ratio (P = 0.049) evaluated by CT scan, while these parameters were not changed in the losartan group. Conclusion. Although there was no significant difference in improvement in liver enzymes with telmisartan and losartan treatment in hypertensive NAFLD patients with type 2 diabetes after 12 months, it is suggested that telmisartan may exert beneficial effects by improving fatty liver.
PMCID: PMC3755443  PMID: 23997767
6.  Loss of Pdk1-Foxo1 Signaling in Myeloid Cells Predisposes to Adipose Tissue Inflammation and Insulin Resistance 
Diabetes  2012;61(8):1935-1948.
Chronic inflammation in adipose tissue contributes to obesity-related insulin resistance. The 3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase 1 (Pdk1)/forkhead transcription factor (Foxo1) pathway is important in regulating glucose and energy homeostasis, but little is known about this pathway in adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs). To investigate this, we generated transgenic mice that carried macrophage/granulocyte-specific mutations, including a Pdk1 knockout (LysMPdk1−/−), a Pdk1 knockout with transactivation-defective Foxo1 (Δ256LysMPdk1−/−), a constitutively active nuclear (CN) Foxo1 (CNFoxo1LysM), or a transactivation-defective Foxo1 (Δ256Foxo1LysM). We analyzed glucose metabolism and gene expression in ATM populations isolated with fluorescence-activated cell sorting. The LysMPdk1−/− mice exhibited elevated M1 macrophages in adipose tissue and insulin resistance. Overexpression of transactivation-defective Foxo1 rescued these phenotypes. CNFoxo1LysM promoted transcription of the C-C motif chemokine receptor 2 (Ccr2) in ATMs and increased M1 macrophages in adipose tissue. On a high-fat diet, CNFoxo1LysM mice exhibited insulin resistance. Pdk1 deletion or Foxo1 activation in bone marrow–derived macrophages abolished insulin and interleukin-4 induction of genes involved in alternative macrophage activation. Thus, Pdk1 regulated macrophage infiltration by inhibiting Foxo1-induced Ccr2 expression. This shows that the macrophage Pdk1/Foxo1 pathway is important in regulating insulin sensitivity in vivo.
PMCID: PMC3402298  PMID: 22586579
7.  Hepatic arterial infusion chemotherapy with gemcitabine and 5-fluorouracil or oral S-1 improves the prognosis of patients with postoperative liver metastases from pancreatic cancer 
Molecular and Clinical Oncology  2013;1(5):869-874.
Hepatic metastasis is a common cause of treatment failure following resection of pancreatic cancer. In this study, we report our results of hepatic arterial infusion (HAI) chemotherapy with gemcitabine (GEM) plus 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) or oral S-1 treatment for postoperative liver metastases from pancreatic cancer. Seven patients with postoperative liver metastases from pancreatic cancer received HAI with GEM plus 5-FU or oral S-1 between October, 2008 and September, 2010 at Kanazawa University Hospital (Kanazawa, Japan). Three out of the 7 cases exhibited a partial response (PR) according to Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST) and stable disease (SD) was achieved in 3 out of the 7 cases (response rate, 85.7%). A decrease in serum tumor marker CA 19-9 levels was observed after 10 HAI treatment cycles in 5 out of the 7 cases. The median time to treatment failure was 8 months (range, 0–17 months). Adverse events included grade 3 leukocytopenia in 1 case and anemia in all 7 cases, although 5 out of the 7 patients were anemic prior to HAI therapy. Grade 2 thrombocytopenia was also observed in 2 cases. Non-hematological events, such as nausea, diarrhea, liver injury or neuropathy and life-threatening toxicities were not reported; however, 6 patients (85.7%) developed catheter-related complications and the HAI catheter and subcutaneous implantable port system had to be removed. These findings demonstrated that HAI may deliver high doses of chemotherapeutic agents directly into the tumor vessels, producing increased regional levels with greater efficacy and a lower incidence/severity of systemic side effects. In conclusion, HAI chemotherapy is a safe and effective treatment for liver metastases from pancreatic cancer.
PMCID: PMC3916203  PMID: 24649263
pancreatic cancer; liver metastasis; hepatic arterial infusion; gemcitabine; 5-fluorouracil; S-1
8.  Chondroblastoma of the distal femur resected through a small fenestra via computed tomography navigation and endoscopy: a case report 
Chondroblastoma is a benign bone tumor with a relatively high incidence in older children and adolescents during the period of active epiphyseal growth. It is generally regarded as a benign neoplasm, but sometimes it grows aggressively or recurs. To prevent recurrence, complete curettage is important; however, such an approach can be extremely difficult to perform precisely when the chondroblastoma arises deep in the epiphysis. In our patient’s case, we used a computed tomography-based navigation system with registration technique involving skin marker fiduciaries and endoscopic curettage of the lesion.
Case presentation
A 16-year-old Japanese girl presented to our facility with left knee joint pain, which started nine months before her initial examination. Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging studies of the left knee showed a radiolucent lesion with marginal sclerosis and lobular homogeneous hypo-intensity and hyper-intensity signals in the distal epiphysis of the left femoral epiphysis, carried through to the growth plate. To prevent recurrence of chondroblastoma and growth disturbance, we used a computed tomography-based navigation system with registration technique involving skin marker fiduciaries and endoscopic curettage of the lesion. Wide excision with total removal of the chondroblastoma in the distal femur often requires large exposure with associated drawbacks, where a wide excision near the growth plate can potentially lead to growth disturbance. Therefore, in an accessible location in the distal femur, endoscopic excision of chondroblastoma under navigation system guidance can be performed with minimal operative damage.
In the setting of a benign intra-osseous lesion infiltrating the growth plate, arthroscopic retrieval or excision under a computed tomography-based navigation system should be considered before proceeding with open surgery.
PMCID: PMC3700752  PMID: 23805921
9.  Kidney Specific Protein-Positive Cells Derived from Embryonic Stem Cells Reproduce Tubular Structures In Vitro and Differentiate into Renal Tubular Cells 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):e64843.
Embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells have the ability to differentiate into various organs and tissues, and are regarded as new tools for the elucidation of disease mechanisms as well as sources for regenerative therapies. However, a method of inducing organ-specific cells from pluripotent stem cells is urgently needed. Although many scientists have been developing methods to induce various organ-specific cells from pluripotent stem cells, renal lineage cells have yet to be induced in vitro because of the complexity of kidney structures and the diversity of kidney-component cells. Here, we describe a method of inducing renal tubular cells from mouse embryonic stem cells via the cell purification of kidney specific protein (KSP)-positive cells using an anti-KSP antibody. The global gene expression profiles of KSP-positive cells derived from ES cells exhibited characteristics similar to those of cells in the developing kidney, and KSP-positive cells had the capacity to form tubular structures resembling renal tubular cells when grown in a 3D culture in Matrigel. Moreover, our results indicated that KSP-positive cells acquired the characteristics of each segment of renal tubular cells through tubular formation when stimulated with Wnt4. This method is an important step toward kidney disease research using pluripotent stem cells, and the development of kidney regeneration therapies.
PMCID: PMC3670839  PMID: 23755150
10.  A phase I study of neoadjuvant chemotherapy with gemcitabine plus oral S-1 for resectable pancreatic cancer 
Molecular and Clinical Oncology  2013;1(4):768-772.
The aim of this study was to determine the maximum-tolerated dose (MTD), the dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) and the recommended dose (RD) of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) with gemcitabine (GEM) plus oral S-1 in patients with resectable pancreatic cancer. Thirteen patients with radiologically proven resectable pancreatic cancer were included in this study. S-1 was administered orally for 14 consecutive days, and GEM was administered on days 8 and 15 for two pre-operative cycles. The dose of S-1 in this study was planned with fixed doses of GEM (1,000 mg/m2): 20, 30 and 40 mg/day for levels 0, 1 and 2, respectively. Treatment was initiated at level 1 in 3 patients, while adverse events occurred in 2 patients during the second course, leading to a dose reduction to level 0 for the 8 remaining patients. Two of the 10 patients enrolled at level 0 were excluded. Of the remaining 8 patients, GEM administration was terminated due to DLT on day 15, during the first course in 3 patients, while level 0 dosage reached MTD. Surgery was performed for the remaining 11 patients included in the study. Post-operative complications included pancreatic fistulas in 5 patients and Pseudomonas aeruginosa sepsis in 1 patient. Two of the 11 patients exhibited a partial response and 9 patients stable disease. Eight of the 11 tumor specimens showed histopathological evidence of tumor cell injury. In conclusion, NAC with GEM and S-1 was not well-tolerated in this study. However, pre-operative chemotherapy may be effective against pancreatic cancer. Therefore, it is necessary to reconsider NAC regimens for pancreatic cancer.
PMCID: PMC3915328  PMID: 24649244
pancreatic cancer; gemcitabine; S-1; neoadjuvant chemotherapy; phase I
12.  Relationship between Stage of Diabetic Retinopathy and Pulse Wave Velocity in Japanese Patients with Type 2 Diabetes 
Journal of Diabetes Research  2013;2013:193514.
Objectives. We investigated the relationship between the stage of diabetic retinopathy and pulse wave velocity (PWV). Methods. This was a cross-sectional study of 689 patients (406 men and 283 women) with type 2 diabetes who were admitted to our hospital from 2004 to 2007. Brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV) was measured by an arterial pressure measurement device as PWV/ABI. Diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy was made by ophthalmologists based on the Davis classification: no diabetic retinopathy (NDR), simple retinopathy (SDR), pre-proliferative retinopathy (pre-PDR), and proliferative retinopathy (PDR). Results. There was a significant difference in PWV between patients without diabetic retinopathy (1657.0 ± 417.9 m/s (mean ± SD)) and with diabetic retinopathy (1847.1 ± 423.9 m/s) (P < 0.001). In addition, the stage of diabetic retinopathy was associated with aortic PWV (1657.0 ± 417.9 m/s in NDR (n = 420), 1819.4 ± 430.3 m/s in SDR (n = 152), 1862.1 ± 394.0 m/s in pre-PDR (n = 54), and 1901.1 ± 433.5 m/s in PDR (n = 63) (P < 0.001)). Conclusions. In patients with diabetic retinopathy, even in those with SDR, PWV was higher than that in patients without diabetic retinopathy. Physicians should therefore pay attention to the value of PWV and macroangiopathy regardless of the stage of diabetic retinopathy.
PMCID: PMC3647565  PMID: 23671858
13.  Factors Associated with the Decline of Kidney Function Differ among eGFR Strata in Subjects with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus 
Introduction. There is no report about risk factors for renal deterioration according to the clinical stage, divided by the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) in type 2 diabetes. Materials and Methods. We evaluated the factors correlated with the annual eGFR decline in 1303 subjects with type 2 diabetes whose eGFR was ≥30 mL/min/1.73 m2. eGFR strata were defined by baseline eGFR value as follows: stratum 1: ≥90, stratum 2: ≥60, <90, and stratum 3: ≥30, <60. Results. The annual eGFR decline was 2.3 ± 5.4 mL/min/1.73 m2 in overall subjects. Multiple linear regression analysis demonstrated that age, male sex, systolic blood pressure, logarithmically transformed albumin excretion rate (AER), eGFR strata, and hemoglobin concentration were significantly correlated with the annual eGFR decline. When stratified by eGFR, the factors that showed a significant correlation were different among eGFR strata. AER was significantly correlated with annual eGFR decline in all eGFR strata. Hemoglobin concentration showed a significant correlation only in the advanced eGFR stratum. Conclusion. The factors correlated with the annual eGFR decline were different among eGFR strata in type 2 diabetes mellitus, and hemoglobin concentration and AER were important factors for renal deterioration, especially in the advanced eGFR stratum.
PMCID: PMC3536318  PMID: 23316229
14.  A NOTCH3-mediated squamous cell differentiation program limits expansion of EMT competent cells that express the ZEB transcription factors 
Cancer research  2011;71(21):6836-6847.
Zinc finger E-box binding (ZEB) proteins ZEB1 and ZEB2 are transcription factors essential in transforming growth factor (TGF)-β-mediated senescence, epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and cancer stem cell function. ZEBs are negatively regulated by members of the miR-200 microRNA family, but precisely how tumor cells expressing ZEBs emerge during invasive growth remains unknown. Here we report that NOTCH3-mediated signaling prevents expansion of a unique subset of ZEB-expressing cells. ZEB expression was associated with the lack of cellular capability of undergoing NOTCH3-mediated squamous differentiation in human esophageal cells. Genetic inhibition of the Notch-mediated transcriptional activity by dominant-negative Mastermind-like1 (DNMAML1) prevented squamous differentiation and induction of Notch target genes including NOTCH3. Moreover, DNMAML1 enriched EMT competent cells exhibited robust upregulation of ZEBs, downregulation of the miR-200 family, and enhanced anchorage independent growth and tumor formation in nude mice. RNA interference (RNAi) experiments suggested the involvement of ZEBs in anchorage independent colony formation, invasion and TGF-β-mediated EMT. Invasive growth and impaired squamous differentiation was recapitulated upon Notch inhibition by DNMAML1 in organotypic 3D culture, a form of human tissue engineering. Together, our findings indicate that NOTCH3 is a key factor limiting the expansion of ZEB-expressing cells, providing novel mechanistic insights into the role of Notch signaling in the cell fate regulation and disease progression of squamous esophageal cancers.
PMCID: PMC3206139  PMID: 21890822
Notch; EMT; squamous cell differentiation; ZEB1; miR-200
15.  Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) arising in stump of amputated finger in a patient with resected glossal SCC 
BMC Research Notes  2012;5:595.
Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the hands and fingers are sometimes locally aggressive; with higher rates of regional metastasis than other cutaneous SCC, although distant metastasis is rare.
Case presentation
We present the case of a 62–year-old Japanese man with double cancers: a tongue SCC and a cutaneous SCC. Swelling of the finger lesion developed gradually around the entire remaining middle finger after accidental amputation at the proximal interphalangeal joint. Histopathological examination of the tumor on the stump of the amputated finger indicated a well-differentiated SCC. The past history indicated surgery for SCC of the tongue 3 years earlier; with histopathology of moderately-differentiated SCC.
Since dedifferentiation is unlikely in metastatic tumors, the cutaneous SCC of the finger is unlikely to have originated from the tongue SCC. Alternatively, the double cancer may be two unrelated lesions or the tongue tumor could have originated from the cutaneous SCC.
PMCID: PMC3607937  PMID: 23111060
Squamous cell carcinoma; Finger amputation stump; Glossal tumor; Double cancer
16.  Bile Acid Binding Resin Improves Metabolic Control through the Induction of Energy Expenditure 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(8):e38286.
Besides well-established roles of bile acids (BA) in dietary lipid absorption and cholesterol homeostasis, it has recently become clear that BA is also a biological signaling molecule. We have shown that strategies aimed at activating TGR5 by increasing the BA pool size with BA administration may constitute a significant therapeutic advance to combat the metabolic syndrome and suggest that such strategies are worth testing in a clinical setting. Bile acid binding resin (BABR) is known not only to reduce serum cholesterol levels but also to improve glucose tolerance and insulin resistance in animal models and humans. However, the mechanisms by which BABR affects glucose homeostasis have not been established. We investigated how BABR affects glycemic control in diet-induced obesity models.
Methods and Findings
We evaluated the metabolic effect of BABR by administrating colestimide to animal models for the metabolic syndrome. Administration of BABR increased energy expenditure, translating into significant weight reduction and insulin sensitization. The metabolic effects of BABR coincide with activation of cholesterol and BA synthesis in liver and thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue. Interestingly, these effects of BABR occur despite normal food intake and triglyceride absorption. Administration of BABR and BA had similar effects on BA composition and thermogenesis, suggesting that they both are mediated via TGR5 activation.
Our data hence suggest that BABR could be useful for the management of the impaired glucose tolerance of the metabolic syndrome, since they not only lower cholesterol levels, but also reduce obesity and improve insulin resistance.
PMCID: PMC3430641  PMID: 22952571
17.  A case of hypoglycemic hemiparesis and literature review 
Upsala Journal of Medical Sciences  2012;117(3):347-351.
An 89-year-old man with diabetes treated with metformin 500 mg/day and glimepiride 4 mg/day was hospitalized because of hypoglycemic right hemiparesis and dysarthria (casual glucose value 1.8 mmol/L), which resolved quickly following administration of 40 mL of 40% dextrose. Hemiparesis is a rare symptom (4.2%) of hypoglycemia. There are about 200 case reports of hypoglycemic hemiparesis. The average glucose level at which hemiparesis developed was 1.8 mmol/L. Right-sided hemiparesis predominated (R 66%; L 34%). On imaging studies, abnormal findings were frequently observed in the internal capsule or splenium of the corpus callosum. The mechanism of hemiparesis is not fully understood. The existence of cases in which hypoglycemia cannot be distinguished from stroke on imaging studies suggests the importance of measurement of the blood glucose level when the symptoms of stroke are first recognized.
PMCID: PMC3410296  PMID: 22247979
Diabetes; glimepiride; hypoglycemic hemiparesis; magnetic resonance; metformin
18.  Increased E-selectin in hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury mediates liver metastasis of pancreatic cancer 
Oncology Reports  2012;28(3):791-796.
Several recent studies have reported that selectins are produced during ischemia-reperfusion injury, and that selectin ligands play an important role in cell binding to the endothelium and in liver metastasis. Portal clamping during pancreaticoduodenectomy with vessel resection for pancreatic head cancer causes hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury, which might promote liver metastasis. We investigated the liver colonization of pancreatic cancer cells under hepatic ischemia-reperfusion and examined the involvement of E-selectin and its ligands. A human pancreatic cancer cell line (Capan-1) was injected into the spleen of mice after hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (I/R group). In addition, to investigate the effect of an anti-E-selectin antibody on liver colonization in the IR group, mice received an intraperitoneal injection of the anti-E-selectin antibody following hepatic ischemia-reperfusion and tumor inoculation (IR+Ab group). Four weeks later, mice were sacrificed and the number of tumor nodules on the liver was compared to mice without hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (control group). The incidence of liver metastasis in the I/R group was significantly higher (16 of 20, 80%) than that in the control group (6 of 20, 30%) (P<0.01). Moreover, mice in the I/R group had significantly more tumor nodules compared to those in the control group (median, 9.9 vs. 2.7 nodules) (P<0.01). In the I/R+Ab group, only 2 of 5 (40%) mice developed liver metastases. RT-PCR and southern blotting of the liver extracts showed that the expression of IL-1 and E-selectin mRNA after hepatic ischemia-reperfusion was significantly higher than the basal levels. Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion increases liver metastases and E-selectin expression in pancreatic cancer. These results suggest that E-selectin produced due to hepatic ischemia-reperfusion is involved in liver metastasis.
PMCID: PMC3583556  PMID: 22766603
ischemia-reperfusion injury; E-selectin; sialyl-LewisA; liver metastasis; pancreatic cancer; portal clamping
19.  Notch receptor inhibition reveals the importance of cyclin D1 and Wnt signaling in invasive esophageal squamous cell carcinoma 
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is one of the most aggressive forms of squamous cell carcinomas. Common genetic lesions in ESCC include p53 mutations and EGFR overexpression, both of which have been implicated in negative regulation of Notch signaling. In addition, cyclin D1 is overexpressed in ESCC and can be activated via EGFR, Notch and Wnt signaling. To elucidate how these genetic lesions may interact during the development and progression of ESCC, we tested a panel of genetically engineered human esophageal cells (keratinocytes) in organotypic 3D culture (OTC), a form of human tissue engineering. Notch signaling was suppressed in culture and mice by dominant negative Mastermind-like1 (DNMAML1), a genetic pan-Notch inhibitor. DNMAML1 mice were subjected to 4-Nitroquinoline 1-oxide-induced oral-esophageal carcinogenesis. Highly invasive characteristics of primary human ESCC were recapitulated in OTC as well as DNMAML1 mice. In OTC, cyclin D1 overexpression induced squamous hyperplasia. Concurrent EGFR overexpression and mutant p53 resulted in transformation and invasive growth. Interestingly, cell proliferation appeared to be regulated differentially between those committed to squamous-cell differentiation and those invading into the stroma. Invasive cells exhibited Notch-independent activation of cyclin D1 and Wnt signaling. Within the oral-esophageal squamous epithelia, Notch signaling regulated squamous-cell differentiation to maintain epithelial integrity, and thus may act as a tumor suppressor by preventing the development of a tumor-promoting inflammatory microenvironment.
PMCID: PMC3410579  PMID: 22860235
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; organotypic 3D culture; EGFR; P53; cyclin D1; Wnt; Notch; squamous-cell differentiation; invasion; 4-Nitroquinoline 1-oxide
20.  MPO-ANCA associated crescentic glomerulonephritis with numerous immune complexes: case report 
BMC Nephrology  2012;13:32.
Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-associated crescentic glomerulonephritis (CGN) is a major cause of rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis (RPGN). ANCA-associated CGN is generally classified into pauci-immune RPGN, in which there are few or no immune complexes.
Case Presentation
A 78-year-old man presented with RPGN after a 7-year course of chronic proteinuria and hematuria with stable renal function. A blood examination showed a high titer of myeloperoxidase (MPO)-ANCA. A renal biopsy showed crescentic glomerulonephritis with abundant subepithelial, intramenbranous and subendothelial deposits by electron microscopy, leading to the diagnosis of ANCA-associated CGN superimposed on type 3 membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN).
This case is unique in that type 3 MPGN and MPO-ANCA-associated CGN coexisted, and no similar case has been reported to date. Because ANCA-associated CGN has a predilection for elderly individuals and primary type 3 MPGN is rarely seen in this age group, coincidental existence appears less likely. This case may confer valuable information regarding the link between immune complex and ANCA-associated CGN.
PMCID: PMC3470990  PMID: 22656245
Myeloperoxidase-antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody; Membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis; Immune complex; Rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis
21.  Novel repressor regulates insulin sensitivity through interaction with Foxo1 
The EMBO Journal  2012;31(10):2275-2295.
Novel repressor regulates insulin sensitivity through interaction with Foxo1
This study characterizes a novel Foxo1 CoRepressor (FCoR) that regulates insulin sensitivity and energy metabolism as revealed by whole-body knockout. As target of PKA phosphorylation, FCoR modulates Foxo's acetylation known to control Foxo's biological activity.
Forkhead box-containing protein o (Foxo) 1 is a key transcription factor in insulin and glucose metabolism. We identified a Foxo1-CoRepressor (FCoR) protein in mouse adipose tissue that inhibits Foxo1's activity by enhancing acetylation via impairment of the interaction between Foxo1 and the deacetylase Sirt1 and via direct acetylation. FCoR is phosphorylated at Threonine 93 by catalytic subunit of protein kinase A and is translocated into nucleus, making it possible to bind to Foxo1 in both cytosol and nucleus. Knockdown of FCoR in 3T3-F442A cells enhanced expression of Foxo target and inhibited adipocyte differentiation. Overexpression of FCoR in white adipose tissue decreased expression of Foxo-target genes and adipocyte size and increased insulin sensitivity in Leprdb/db mice and in mice fed a high-fat diet. In contrast, Fcor knockout mice were lean, glucose intolerant, and had decreased insulin sensitivity that was accompanied by increased expression levels of Foxo-target genes and enlarged adipocytes. Taken together, these data suggest that FCoR is a novel repressor that regulates insulin sensitivity and energy metabolism in adipose tissue by acting to fine-tune Foxo1 activity.
PMCID: PMC3364737  PMID: 22510882
acetylation; Foxo1; FCoR; Sirt1
22.  Differential Effects in Cardiovascular Markers between High-Dose Angiotensin II Receptor Blocker Monotherapy and Combination Therapy of ARB with Calcium Channel Blocker in Hypertension (DEAR Trial) 
Background/Aims. Arterial stiffness is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. This study was conducted to determine the effect of olmesartan (OLM) and azelnidipine (AZL) on arterial stiffness using the cardio-ankle vascular index (CAVI), which is a novel blood pressure (BP)-independent marker for arterial stiffness in hypertensive patients. Methods. Fifty-two consecutive hypertensive patients were randomly assigned either to a group treated with OLM monotherapy or to a group treated with OLM and AZL combination therapy. Clinical and biological parameters were measured before and 12 months after the start of this study. Results. Both therapies significantly and similarly reduced BP, augmentation index, and plasma aldosterone levels. The combination therapy significantly decreased CAVI and serum low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C) levels and these reductions were significantly greater than those produced with monotherapy. No significant differences in metabolic parameters were observed between the two therapies. Conclusion. The combination therapy with OLM and AZL had beneficial effects on arterial stiffness assessed by CAVI, LDL-C, and metabolism, despite the similar BP reduction, compared with OLM monotherapy. Since these markers are known to influence the future risk of cardiovascular events, combination therapy with OLM and AZL could be a useful choice for treating hypertensive patients.
PMCID: PMC3132603  PMID: 21755034
23.  Plasma 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Is Independently Associated with Hemoglobin Concentration in Male Subjects with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus 
Introduction. It was reported that 25-hydroxyvitamin D level was independently associated with anemia in chronic kidney diseases, but the relation between vitamin D and anemia in diabetes mellitus is not still certain. We analyzed the relation between plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D level and hemoglobin concentration. Materials and Methods. A cross-sectional study in male patients with type 2 diabetes was performed. Correlation coefficients and standardized partial regression coefficient for the hemoglobin concentration were evaluated. Results. Hemoglobin concentration was positively correlated with body mass index, HbA1c, estimated glomerular filtration rate, cholinesterase, and 25-hydroxyvitamin D level and negatively correlated with age, duration of diabetes mellitus, serum creatinine, and urinary albumin creatinine ratio. Multiple regression analysis revealed the independent relation of 25-hydroxyvitamin D to hemoglobin concentration. Conclusions. Plasma circulating form of vitamin D is significantly associated with hemoglobin concentration in diabetes mellitus independent of the clinical markers for kidney function or nutrition.
PMCID: PMC3132598  PMID: 21754928
24.  PDK1-Foxo1 in Agouti-Related Peptide Neurons Regulates Energy Homeostasis by Modulating Food Intake and Energy Expenditure 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(4):e18324.
Insulin and leptin intracellular signaling pathways converge and act synergistically on the hypothalamic phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase/3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase 1 (PDK1). However, little is known about whether PDK1 in agouti-related peptide (AGRP) neurons contributes to energy homeostasis. We generated AGRP neuron-specific PDK1 knockout (AGRPPdk1−/−) mice and mice with selective expression of transactivation-defective Foxo1 (Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/−). The AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed reductions in food intake, body length, and body weight. The Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice showed increased body weight, food intake, and reduced locomotor activity. After four weeks of calorie-restricted feeding, oxygen consumption and locomotor activity were elevated in AGRPPdk1−/− mice and reduced in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. In vitro, ghrelin-induced changes in [Ca2+]i and inhibition of ghrelin by leptin were significantly attenuated in AGRPPdk1−/− neurons compared to control neurons. However, ghrelin-induced [Ca2+]i changes and leptin inhibition were restored in Δ256Foxo1AGRPPdk1−/− mice. These results suggested that PDK1 and Foxo1 signaling pathways play important roles in the control of energy homeostasis through AGRP-independent mechanisms.
PMCID: PMC3072380  PMID: 21694754
25.  Selective depletion of mouse kidney proximal straight tubule cells causes acute kidney injury 
Transgenic Research  2011;21(1):51-62.
The proximal straight tubule (S3 segment) of the kidney is highly susceptible to ischemia and toxic insults but has a remarkable capacity to repair its structure and function. In response to such injuries, complex processes take place to regenerate the epithelial cells of the S3 segment; however, the precise molecular mechanisms of this regeneration are still being investigated. By applying the “toxin receptor mediated cell knockout” method under the control of the S3 segment-specific promoter/enhancer, Gsl5, which drives core 2 β-1,6-N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase gene expression, we established a transgenic mouse line expressing the human diphtheria toxin (DT) receptor only in the S3 segment. The administration of DT to these transgenic mice caused the selective ablation of S3 segment cells in a dose-dependent manner, and transgenic mice exhibited polyuria containing serum albumin and subsequently developed oliguria. An increase in the concentration of blood urea nitrogen was also observed, and the peak BUN levels occurred 3–7 days after DT administration. Histological analysis revealed that the most severe injury occurred in the S3 segments of the proximal tubule, in which tubular cells were exfoliated into the tubular lumen. In addition, aquaporin 7, which is localized exclusively to the S3 segment, was diminished. These results indicate that this transgenic mouse can suffer acute kidney injury (AKI) caused by S3 segment-specific damage after DT administration. This transgenic line offers an excellent model to uncover the mechanisms of AKI and its rapid recovery.
PMCID: PMC3264875  PMID: 21431867
Kidney proximal straight tubules; Transgenic mouse; Diphtheria toxin receptor; Acute kidney injury (acute renal failure)

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