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1.  Detection and preliminary evaluation of circulating tumor cells in the peripheral blood of patients with eight types of cancer using a telomerase-specific adenovirus 
Oncology Reports  2014;32(5):1772-1778.
We developed a detection method for circulating tumor cells (CTCs) using the telomerase-specific adenovirus OBP-401. This recombinant virus has a telomerase promoter at the 5′-end of the viral genome and GFP at the 3′-end. To date, CTC enumeration using OBP-401 has shown prognostic impact for gastric and small cell lung cancer patients. In the present study, peripheral blood samples from patients with eight types of cancer, including some cancers previously untested with OBP-401 (i.e., esophagus, pancreas, and prostate cancers) were subjected to this method in order to evaluate its versatility. It was recently discovered that some white blood cells (WBCs) false-positively react with OBP-401. Although anti-CD45 antibodies can absorb these adverse cells from peripheral blood, the simplicity of the OBP-401 method would be diminished by the introduction of antibody treatment. Therefore, we evaluated another approach to minimize the false positivity of WBCs. Seven anti-CD antibodies were employed to stain the species of WBCs that false-positively reacted with OBP-401. We revealed that the false-positively reacted WBCs were monocytes in the peripheral blood of both healthy subjects and cancer patients. Based on a size distribution analysis of the GFP-positive monocytes, the size criterion for CTCs using OBP-401 was defined to be a cellular diameter >8.4 μm. In total, 43% of 86 cancer patients examined in the present study were CTC-positive using this definition. CTCs were enumerated from peripheral blood samples collected from patients with each of the eight types of cancer; the detectability of CTCs for esophagus, pancreas and prostate cancers by the OBP-401 method was confirmed for the first time in the present study. However, no clear correlation between CTC positivity and the clinical characteristics of patients with any type of cancer was observed because of the small number of patients with each type of cancer. An additional clinical study will be conducted to confirm the clinical meaning of CTCs enumerated by OBP-401.
PMCID: PMC4203327  PMID: 25176113
adenovirus; circulating tumor cells; OBP-401; telomerase
2.  Single-Cell Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis to Detect the Early Stage of DNA Fragmentation in Human Sperm Nuclei 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(7):e42257.
Single-cell pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (SCPFGE) with dual electrode pairs was developed to detect the early stage of DNA fragmentation in human sperm. The motile sperm were purified by the commonly used density-gradient centrifugation technique and subsequent swim-up. The sperm were embedded in a thin film of agarose containing bovine trypsin (20 µg/mL) and were then lysed. Prior to SCPFGE, proteolysis of DNA-binding components, such as protamine and the nuclear matrix was essential to separate the long chain fibers from the fibrous and granular fragments derived from a single nucleus. The overall electrophoretic profiles elucidated the course of DNA fragmentation. A few large fibrous fragments were observed at the beginning of the process, however, as the fragmentation advanced, the long chain fibers decreased and shortened, and, conversely, the granular fragments increased until finally almost all the DNA was shredded. Although the ejaculate contained sperm with heterogeneous stages, the purified motile sperm exhibited several dozens of uniformly elongated fibers arising from the tangled DNA at the origin, whereas a part of these fibers gave rise to fibrous fragments beyond the tip of the elongated fibers, and their numbers and sizes varied among the sperm. Conventional intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) usually depends on intra-operative light microscopic observation to select a sperm for injection. The present results revealed that sperm motility could not give full assurance of DNA integrity. SCPFGE is likely to serve an important role in the preoperative differential diagnosis to determine the competence of the sperm population provided for injection.
PMCID: PMC3407096  PMID: 22848752
3.  Evaluation of factors associated with the anxiety and depression of female infertility patients 
Because the primary aim of infertility treatment is to achieve pregnancy, mental health care during this treatment is often neglected. However, the inability to conceive children is stressful for couples throughout the world. Thus, the purpose of this study was to investigate factors related to the anxiety and depression of female infertility patients.
Participants included 83 Japanese women who initially visited the Reproduction Center of the Tokyo Dental College Ichikawa General Hospital to undergo testing and receive infertility treatment between February and April 2008. We administered two psychological tests, the Self-rating Depression Scale (SDS) test and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) test. We then examined the association of the test results with age, pregnancy and delivery history, employment status, duration of infertility, infertility treatment history, and male infertility.
As patient age increased, total HADS and depression scores also increased. No correlation was observed between duration of infertility and SDS or HADS scores. Results were similar when the presence and absence of delivery history was compared. Patients who underwent infertility treatment were more likely to have high HADS depression scores compared to patients who had not undergone treatment. Additionally, patients whose husbands were infertile had significantly lower total HADS and anxiety scores than those whose husbands were not infertile.
Age and male infertility are factors that influence the presence of anxiety and depression in female infertility patients.
PMCID: PMC3262742  PMID: 22195642
Infertility; Anxiety; Mood disorder; Psychological test; Mental health
4.  Spontaneous transformation of human granulosa cell tumours into an aggressive phenotype: a metastasis model cell line 
BMC Cancer  2008;8:319.
Granulosa cell tumours (GCTs) are frequently seen in menopausal women and are relatively indolent. Although the physiological properties of normal granulosa cells have been studied extensively, little is known about the molecular mechanism of GCT progression. Here, we characterise the unique behavioural properties of a granulosa tumour cell line, KGN cells, for the molecular analysis of GCT progression.
Population doubling was carried out to examine the proliferation capacity of KGN cells. Moreover, the invasive capacity of these cells was determined using the in vitro invasion assay. The expression level of tumour markers in KGN cells at different passages was then determined by Western blot analysis. Finally, the growth and metastasis of KGN cells injected subcutaneously (s.c.) into nude mice was observed 3 months after injection.
During in vitro culture, the advanced passage KGN cells grew 2-fold faster than the early passage cells, as determined by the population doubling assay. Moreover, we found that the advanced passage cells were 2-fold more invasive than the early passage cells. The expression pattern of tumour markers, such as p53, osteopontin, BAX and BAG-1, supported the notion that with passage, KGN cells became more aggressive. Strikingly, KGN cells at both early and advanced passages metastasized to the bowel when injected s.c. into nude mice. In addition, more tumour nodules were formed when the advanced passage cells were implanted.
KGN cells cultured in vitro acquire an aggressive phenotype, which was confirmed by the analysis of cellular activities and the expression of biomarkers. Interestingly, KGN cells injected s.c. are metastatic with nodule formation occurring mostly in the bowel. Thus, this cell line is a good model for analysing GCT progression and the mechanism of metastasis in vivo.
PMCID: PMC2584659  PMID: 18980698
5.  A Reduction in Intraovarian Arterial Blood Flow Resistance After Ovulation is Necessary to Achieve Pregnancy in Natural Cycle 
Purpose: Color Doppler imaging permits the accurate localization of vessels and high-frequency pulsed Doppler ultrasonography has improved the resolution of flow velocity waveforms. In this study, intraovarian arterial blood flow before and after follicle rupture in the natural cycle was examined using transvaginal color flow Doppler imaging and changes in intraovarian arterial resistance in relation to the outcome of infertility treatment was analyzed.
Methods: In a prospective study, 227 spontaneous cycles in 118 infertile patients who were undergoing infertility treatment at the division of Reproductive Medicine in our center were recruited in this study. The impedance to flow in intraovarian vessels was measured by means of transvaginal color flow Doppler imaging during the periovulatory period in the natural cycle of all patients. The pulsatility index (PI) of intraovarian arterial blood flow and pregnancy rate was evaluated.
Results: On the basis of PI values before and after follicular rupture, 227 cycles were classified into severely decreased (113 cycles) and not-severely decreased groups (114 cycles). The pregnancy rate per cycle in the severely decreased group was 18.6% (21/113), significantly higher than that in the not-severely decreased group (7/114; 6.1%, p = 0.004). The miscarriage rate was similar in the two groups.
Conclusions: A reduction in intraovarian blood vessel resistance is necessary to achieve pregnancy in a natural cycle.
PMCID: PMC3455383  PMID: 15807216
Intraovarian arterial blood flow; ovulation; pregnancy; pulsatility index

Results 1-5 (5)