Kazuhiko Higuchi

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Parasporin-2 is a protein toxin that is isolated from parasporal inclusions of the Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis. Although B. thuringiensis is generally known as a valuable source of insecticidal toxins, parasporin-2 is not insecticidal, but has a strong cytocidal activity in liver and colon cancer cells. The 37-kDa inactive nascent protein(More)
Bacillus thuringiensis was recovered at a relatively high frequency from both running and still fresh waters in natural environments of Kyushu, Japan. Of 107 water samples examined, 53 (49.5%) contained this organism. The frequency of B. thuringiensis colonies was 4.4% among 4414 colonies of the Bacillus cereus/B. thuringiensis group. The density of this(More)
As lysosphingolipids have multiple bio-modulator functions in various types of cells, we measured the biological effects of sphingosylphosphorylcholine (SPC) on cultured human melanocytes to determine whether these lysosphingolipids have the potential to activate these cells. The addition of SPC to cultured human melanocytes significantly stimulated DNA(More)
A cytotoxic protein Cry45Aa of Bacillus thuringiensis expressed as inclusion bodies in Escherichia coli was solubilized in 10 mM HCl. Protein concentration of saturated solution of the recombinant Cry45Aa in 10 mM HCl was about 25 times higher than that in the buffer of previous method (in 50 mM sodium carbonate buffer, pH 10.5, containing 1 mM EDTA, and 10(More)
This study was conducted to test a three-layered artificial neural network analysis of phonocardiogram recordings to diagnose, automatically and objectively, the condition of the heart in patients with heart murmurs. The data were recorded simultaneously in each of 49 patients with a heart murmur through eight microphones attached to the skin surface with(More)
To promote the application of catalase for treating wastewater containing hydrogen peroxide, bacteria exhibiting high catalase activity were screened. A bacterium, designated strain 2-1, with high catalase activity was isolated from the wastewater of a beverage factory that uses hydrogen peroxide. Strain 2-1 was identified as Rhizobium radiobacter (formerly(More)
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE To determine how much barrier-reinforcing effects of ceramides contribute to prevent the surfactant-induced cutaneous deterioration. METHODS We compared the effects of topical application of two types of pseudoceramides on cutaneous deterioration induced by sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) treatment for 10 days in association with(More)
Bacillus thuringiensis is a valuable source of protein toxins that are specifically effective against certain insects and worms but harmless to mammals. In contrast, a protein toxin obtained from B. thuringiensis strain A1547, designated parasporin-2, is not insecticidal but has a strong cytocidal activity against human cells with markedly divergent target(More)
The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress response is a cytoprotective mechanism against the accumulation of unfolded proteins in the ER (ER stress) that consists of three response pathways (the ATF6, IRE1 and PERK pathways) in mammals. These pathways regulate the transcription of ER-related genes through specific cis-acting elements, ERSE, UPRE and AARE,(More)