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1.  Correlation between the Serum Pepsinogen I Level and the Symptom Degree in Proton Pump Inhibitor-Users Administered with a Probiotic 
Pharmaceuticals  2014;7(7):754-764.
In patients with functional upper gastrointestinal disorders such as gastroesophageal reflux disease and functional dyspepsia, the presence of symptoms is thought to occur in the absence of any organic diseases and the mechanisms behind this remain unclear. We therefore examined the relationship between stomach-related biomarker levels and symptoms. Twenty-four outpatients who had taken proton-pump inhibitors every day were enrolled in this study. The subjects consumed yogurt containing 109 colony-forming units of Lactobacillus gasseri OLL2716 (LG21) every day for three months. They underwent four clinical examinations in total. Each examination consisted of answering a questionnaire with a frequency scale for the symptoms of GERD (FSSG), and included measurements of the serum gastrin, ghrelin, and pepsinogens I and II levels. As a result, the FSSG score and the PGI value showed a decrease and an increase, respectively, after LG21 treatment when analyzed without age adjustment. A multiple regression analysis with additional adjustments for gender and age revealed a strong association between the PGI value and the FSSG symptom scores. Therefore either the PGI level itself or the factors regulating the PGI level might be involved in the etiology of these symptoms.
PMCID: PMC4113730  PMID: 24967535
correlation; symptoms; PGI; PPI; LG21
2.  Rational/antiemotional behaviors in interpersonal relationships and the functional prognosis of patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a Japanese multicenter, longitudinal study 
The repression of negative emotions is a personality factor that received considerable attention in the 1950-60s as being relevant to the onset and course of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Despite subsequent, repeated criticisms of the cross-sectional nature of the earlier studies, even to date few prospective studies have been reported on this issue. This multicenter study prospectively examined if “rational and antiemotional” behavior (antiemotionality), characterized by an extreme tendency to suppress emotional behaviors and to rationalize negative experiences in conflicting interpersonal situations, is associated with the functional prognosis of patients with RA.
532 patients with RA who regularly visited one of eight hospitals/clinics in Japan in 2000 were recruited for study. All completed a self-administered baseline questionnaire about lifestyle and psychosocial factors including antiemotionality. Two years after, 460 (mean age, 56.1 years; 54 men and 406 women) of 471 patients who continued to visit the clinics agreed to take the follow-up questionnaire. The functional status of the patients was evaluated by rheumatologists based on the ACR classification system.
A multiple logistic regression model that included baseline demographic, disease activity/severity-related, therapeutic, and socioeconomic factors as covariates found a tendency toward higher antiemotionality to be related to poorer functional status at follow-up. This relationship was not explained by lifestyle factors.
Antiemotionality may be a prognostic factor for the functional status of patients with RA. This finding sheds light on a seemingly forgotten issue in the care of patients with RA.
PMCID: PMC3941968  PMID: 24565416
Rheumatoid arthritis; Psychological stress; Personality; Emotions; Function; Prospective studies
3.  Do Interventions to Prevent Lifestyle-Related Diseases Reduce Healthcare Expenditures? A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial 
Journal of Epidemiology  2011;21(1):75-80.
In 2008, the Japanese government implemented a program of health lifestyle interventions to reduce health care expenditure. This study evaluated whether these interventions decreased health care expenditures.
The study enrolled 99 participants insured by Japanese National Health Insurance, who, in our previous study conducted in 2004, were allocated by random sampling into an intervention group (50 participants) and a control group (49 participants). In the intervention group, we used a health support method that facilitated the attainment of goals established by each participant. The control group received instruction in exercise, as well as health support using publically available media. Although 3 participants in the intervention group and 9 participants in the control group did not participate in a follow-up health examination 1 year after the intervention, the health care expenditures of all initial participants were assessed. Expenditures before and after the intervention were compared within and between groups. Data on health care expenditures were obtained from inpatient, outpatient, pharmacy, and dental health insurance claims.
After the intervention, the pharmacy and dental expenditures were significantly higher in the intervention group, while the pharmacy expenditure was significantly higher in the control group. However, there was no significant difference in any medical expenditure item between the intervention and control groups before or after the intervention.
No significant differences were observed in short-term medical expenses for any medical expenditure item after a lifestyle intervention.
PMCID: PMC3899520  PMID: 21139319
health policy; randomized controlled trial; prevention; lifestyle-related diseases; health care expenditures
4.  The parenting attitudes and the stress of mothers predict the asthmatic severity of their children: a prospective study 
To examine relationships between a mother's stress-related conditions and parenting attitudes and their children's asthmatic status.
274 mothers of an asthmatic child 2 to 12 years old completed a questionnaire including questions about their chronic stress/coping behaviors (the "Stress Inventory"), parenting attitudes (the "Ta-ken Diagnostic Test for Parent-Child Relationship, Parent Form"), and their children's disease status. One year later, a follow-up questionnaire was mailed to the mothers that included questions on the child's disease status.
223 mothers (81%) responded to the follow-up survey. After controlling for non-psychosocial factors including disease severity at baseline, multiple linear regression analysis followed by multiple logistic regression analysis found chronic irritation/anger and emotional suppression to be aggravating factors for children aged < 7 years; for children aged 7 and over, the mothers' egocentric behavior was a mitigating factor while interference was an aggravating factor.
Different types of parental stress/coping behaviors and parenting styles may differently predict their children's asthmatic status, and such associations may change as children grow.
PMCID: PMC2959059  PMID: 20929533
5.  Cigarette smoking, genetic polymorphisms and colorectal cancer risk: the Fukuoka Colorectal Cancer Study 
BMC Cancer  2010;10:274.
It is uncertain whether smoking is related to colorectal cancer risk. Cytochrome P-450 CYP1A1, glutathione-S-transferase (GST) and NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) are important enzymes in the metabolism of tobacco carcinogens, and functional genetic polymorphisms are known for these enzymes. We investigated the relation of cigarette smoking and related genetic polymorphisms to colorectal cancer risk, with special reference to the interaction between smoking and genetic polymorphism.
We used data from the Fukuoka Colorectal Cancer Study, a population-based case-control study, including 685 cases and 778 controls who gave informed consent to genetic analysis. Interview was conducted to assess lifestyle factors, and DNA was extracted from buffy coat.
In comparison with lifelong nonsmokers, the odds ratios (OR) of colorectal cancer for <400, 400-799 and ≥800 cigarette-years were 0.65 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.45-0.89), 1.16 (0.83-1.62) and 1.14 (0.73-1.77), respectively. A decreased risk associated with light smoking was observed only for colon cancer, and rectal cancer showed an increased risk among those with ≥400 cigarette-years (OR 1.60, 95% CI 1.04-2.45). None of the polymorphisms under study was singly associated with colorectal cancer risk. Of the gene-gene interactions studied, the composite genotype of CYP1A1*2A or CYP1A1*2C and GSTT1 polymorphisms was associated with a decreased risk of colorectal cancer, showing a nearly statistically significant (Pinteraction = 0.06) or significant interaction (Pinteraction = 0.02). The composite genotypes of these two polymorphisms, however, showed no measurable interaction with cigarette smoking in relation to colorectal cancer risk.
Cigarette smoking may be associated with increased risk of rectal cancer, but not of colon cancer. The observed interactions between CYP1A1 and GSTT1 polymorphisms warrant further confirmation.
PMCID: PMC2906477  PMID: 20534171

Results 1-5 (5)