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1.  Combinational risk factors of metabolic syndrome identified by fuzzy neural network analysis of health-check data 
Lifestyle-related diseases represented by metabolic syndrome develop as results of complex interaction. By using health check-up data from two large studies collected during a long-term follow-up, we searched for risk factors associated with the development of metabolic syndrome.
In our original study, we selected 77 case subjects who developed metabolic syndrome during the follow-up and 152 healthy control subjects who were free of lifestyle-related risk components from among 1803 Japanese male employees. In a replication study, we selected 2196 case subjects and 2196 healthy control subjects from among 31343 other Japanese male employees. By means of a bioinformatics approach using a fuzzy neural network (FNN), we searched any significant combinations that are associated with MetS. To ensure that the risk combination selected by FNN analysis was statistically reliable, we performed logistic regression analysis including adjustment.
We selected a combination of an elevated level of γ-glutamyltranspeptidase (γ-GTP) and an elevated white blood cell (WBC) count as the most significant combination of risk factors for the development of metabolic syndrome. The FNN also identified the same tendency in a replication study. The clinical characteristics of γ-GTP level and WBC count were statistically significant even after adjustment, confirming that the results obtained from the fuzzy neural network are reasonable. Correlation ratio showed that an elevated level of γ-GTP is associated with habitual drinking of alcohol and a high WBC count is associated with habitual smoking.
This result obtained by fuzzy neural network analysis of health check-up data from large long-term studies can be useful in providing a personalized novel diagnostic and therapeutic method involving the γ-GTP level and the WBC count.
PMCID: PMC3469424  PMID: 22853735
Data mining; Combinational risk factor; Fuzzy neural network; Glutamyltranspeptidase; Lifestyle disease; Personalized diagnostic method; White blood cell
2.  Relation of a common variant of the adiponectin gene to serum adiponectin concentration and metabolic traits in an aged Japanese population 
Adiponectin is an adipocyte-derived protein that is down-regulated in obesity-linked disorders. Variants of the adiponectin gene (ADIPOQ) have been shown to affect adiponectin level. We have now examined the relation of polymorphisms of ADIPOQ to adiponectin concentration and to metabolic disorders in the Kita-Nagoya Genomic Epidemiology study, a population-based study of elderly Japanese. The genomic region including ADIPOQ was genotyped for 30 single nucleotide polymorphisms in 500 subjects of a screening population with the use of a fluorescence- or colorimetry-based allele-specific DNA primer–probe assay system. Four polymorphisms were then selected for genotyping in an additional 2797 subjects. Serum adiponectin level was negatively associated with metabolic abnormalities after adjustment for age and sex. The minor alleles of the rs1656930, Ile164Thr, and rs9882205 polymorphisms were associated with a low serum adiponectin level. Whereas the minor alleles of rs1656930 and rs9882205 were common (minor allele frequency of 6.2 and 38.5%, respectively), that of Ile164Thr was rare (0.9%). The minor allele of rs1656930 was positively associated with systolic blood pressure and the prevalence of hypertension. The association of rs1656930 with adiponectin level was replicated in an independent population. A subject with the 164Thr/Thr genotype had an extremely low serum adiponectin level (0.6 μg/ml) and the phenotype of metabolic syndrome. Our results suggest that a common variant of ADIPOQ, the minor allele of rs1656930, is associated with hypoadiponectinemia and hypertension. Screening for a common genetic background underlying low adiponectin levels might provide important information for assessment and management of metabolic disorders.
PMCID: PMC3062002  PMID: 21150884
adiponectin; polymorphism; metabolic disorder; hypertension; epidemiology
3.  Invasive behavior of ulcerative colitis-associated carcinoma is related to reduced expression of CD44 extracellular domain: comparison with sporadic colon carcinoma 
Diagnostic Pathology  2011;6:30.
To elucidate relations of invasion of ulcerative colitis (UC)-associated carcinoma with its prognosis, the characteristics of invasive fronts were analyzed in comparison with sporadic colonic carcinomas.
Prognoses of 15 cases of UC-associated colonic carcinoma were compared with those of sporadic colon carcinoma cases, after which 75 cases of sporadic invasive adenocarcinoma were collected. Tumor budding was examined histologically at invasive fronts using immunohistochemistry (IHC) of pancytokeratin. Expressions of beta-catenin with mutation analysis, CD44 extracellular domain, Zo-1, occludin, matrix matalloproteinase-7, laminin-5γ2, and sialyl Lewis X (LeX) were immunohistochemically evaluated.
UC-associated carcinoma showed worse prognosis than sporadic colon carcinoma in all the cases, and exhibited a tendency to become more poorly differentiated when carcinoma invaded the submucosa or deeper layers than sporadic carcinoma. When the lesions were compared with sporadic carcinomas considering differentiation grade, reduced expression of CD44 extracellular domain in UC-associated carcinoma was apparent. Laminin-5γ2 and sialyl-LeX expression showed a lower tendency in UC-associated carcinomas than in their sporadic counterparts. There were no differences in the numbers of tumor budding foci between the two lesion types, with no apparent relation to nuclear beta-catenin levels in IHC.
UC-associated carcinoma showed poorer differentiation when the carcinoma invaded submucosa or deeper parts, which may influence the poorer prognosis. The invasive behavior of UC-associated carcinoma is more associated with CD44 cleavage than with basement membrane disruption or sialyl-Lewis-antigen alteration.
PMCID: PMC3079596  PMID: 21473743
4.  Commensal bacteria can enter colonic epithelial cells and induce proinflammatory cytokine secretion: a possible pathogenic mechanism of ulcerative colitis 
Journal of Medical Microbiology  2009;58(Pt 5):535-545.
Interleukin 2 (IL-2)- and IL-10-knockout mice develop spontaneous colitis under conventional but not germ-free conditions, suggesting that commensal bacteria play an important role in the pathogenesis of colitis. However, interactions between commensal bacteria and colonic epithelial cells have not been fully investigated. We therefore assessed the ability of various commensal bacteria and probiotics to adhere to and invade colonic epithelial cells. Effects of the bacteria on production of proinflammatory cytokines were also measured. Commensal bacteria, including mucosal organisms isolated from ulcerative colitis (UC) patients, such as Fusobacterium varium, reported as a possible pathogen in UC, Bacteroides vulgatus, Escherichia coli and Clostridium clostridioforme, as well as their type strains and probiotics, were assessed for their ability to adhere to and invade colonic epithelial cells using two cell lines, SW-480 and HT-29. Our experiments employed co-incubation, a combination of scanning and transmission electron microscopy and recovery of bacteria from infected-cell lysates. F. varium and several other commensal bacteria, but not probiotics, adhered to colonic epithelial cells and invaded their cytoplasm. ELISA and real-time PCR revealed that the host cells, particularly those invaded by F. varium, showed significant increases in IL-8 and TNF-α concentrations in supernatants, with elevation of IL-8, TNF-α, MCP-1 and IL-6 mRNAs. Furthermore, IL-8 and TNF-α expression and nuclear phosphorylated NF-κB p65 expression could be immunohistochemically confirmed in inflamed epithelium with cryptitis or crypt abscess in UC patients. Certain commensal bacteria can invade colonic epithelial cells, activating early intracellular signalling systems to trigger host inflammatory reactions.
PMCID: PMC2887547  PMID: 19369513
6.  The influence of beryllium on cell survival rates in theIn-vitro culture system, on intracellular DNA synthesis and on SRBC-IgM antibody production responses 
Immunocytotoxicity of beryllium (Be) was evaluated by studying cell viability, intracellular DNA synthesis and SRBC-IgM response in an in-vitro culture system using non-sensitized spleen cells of a C57BL mouse. Be addition showed a suppressive effect on cell viability, an enhancing effect on DNA synthesis and on IgM antibody production. The suppressive effect on cell viability manifested itself markedly as the concentration of Be was increased or the culture time was prolonged. The DNA synthesis-enhancing effect was noted at a relatively low concentration of Be (not more than 10μM). The enhancing effect on the IgM response was related to Be concentration at not more than 20μM. The experimental results mentioned above speculate that the cytotoxicity of Be shows a conflicting pattern of enhancement or suppression according to the concentration used and that immunologically it has a modulating effect or an activating effect on the immunocompetent cells.
PMCID: PMC2723540  PMID: 21432464
Beryllium; Survival rate; DNA synthesis; SRBC-IgM antibody

Results 1-6 (6)