Natsuko Ohtomo

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BACKGROUND The clinical significance of autotaxin (ATX), a key enzyme for the production of the bioactive lysophospholipid lysophosphatidic acid remains unknown. Serum ATX enzymatic activity reportedly increases in parallel with liver fibrosis and exhibits a gender difference. METHODS Serum ATX antigen level, measured easier than the activity, was(More)
A protective effect of Rho-kinase inhibitor on various organ injuries is gaining attention. Regarding liver injury, Rho-kinase inhibitor is reported to prevent carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)- or dimethylnitrosamine-induced liver fibrosis and hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury in rats. Because Rho-kinase inhibitor not only improved liver fibrosis but also(More)
The membrane traffic system has been recognized to be involved in carcinogenesis and tumor progression in several types of tumors. α-taxilin is a newly identified membrane traffic-related molecule, and its up-regulation has been reported in embryonic and malignant tissues of neural origin. In the present study, we analyzed the expression of α-taxilin in(More)
Amino acids regulate cellular functions in a variety of cell types. Most notably, leucine stimulates protein production through the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)-dependent signaling pathway. We investigated the effect of amino acids on hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) production. Treatment with glutamine and proline, as well as leucine, increased HGF(More)
Branched chain amino acids modulate various cellular functions in addition to providing substrates for the production of proteins. We examined the mechanism underlying the stimulation by leucine of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) production by hepatic stellate cells. Both p70 S6 kinase activity and phosphorylation of eukaryotic initiation factor 4E-binding(More)
Sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P), a bioactive lipid mediator, stimulates proliferation and contractility in hepatic stellate cells, the principal matrix-producing cells in the liver, and inhibits proliferation via S1P receptor 2 (S1P(2)) in hepatocytes in rats in vitro. A potential role of S1P and S1P(2) in liver regeneration and fibrosis was examined in(More)
The efficacy of a herpes simplex virus (HSV) component vaccine consisting of viral glycoprotein gB was examined in a mouse system. Immunization of mice with HSV type 1 (HSV-1) gB emulsified in Freund's complete adjuvant or with HSV-1 gB adsorbed to aluminum gel was fully protective against subsequent challenge with HSV-1 or HSV type 2. Latent infection in(More)
α-Taxilin, a binding partner of the syntaxin family, is a candidate tumor marker. To gain insight into the physiological role of α-taxilin in normal tissues, we examined α-taxilin expression by Western blot and performed immunochemical analysis in the murine gastrointestinal tract where cell renewal vigorously occurs. α-Taxilin was expressed in the majority(More)
Intracellular vesicle traffic plays an essential role in the establishment and maintenance of organelle identity and biosynthetic transport. We have identified α-taxilin as a binding partner of the syntaxin family, which is involved in intracellular vesicle traffic. Recently, we have found that α-taxilin is over-expressed in malignant tissues including(More)