Schuichi Koizumi

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Pain after nerve damage is an expression of pathological operation of the nervous system, one hallmark of which is tactile allodynia-pain hypersensitivity evoked by innocuous stimuli. Effective therapy for this pain is lacking, and the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here we report that pharmacological blockade of spinal P2X4 receptors(More)
Microglia, brain immune cells, engage in the clearance of dead cells or dangerous debris, which is crucial to the maintenance of brain functions. When a neighbouring cell is injured, microglia move rapidly towards it or extend a process to engulf the injured cell. Because cells release or leak ATP when they are stimulated or injured, extracellular(More)
Neuropathic pain is an expression of pathological operation of the nervous system, which commonly results from nerve injury and is characterized by pain hypersensitivity to innocuous stimuli, a phenomenon known as tactile allodynia. The mechanisms by which nerve injury creates tactile allodynia have remained largely unknown. We report that the development(More)
Elementary Ca2+ release signals in nerve growth factor- (NGF-) differentiated PC12 cells and hippocampal neurons, functionally analogous to the "Ca2+ sparks" and "Ca2+ puffs" identified in other cell types, were characterized by confocal microscopy. They either occurred spontaneously or could be activated by caffeine and metabotropic agonists. The release(More)
Originally ascribed passive roles in the CNS, astrocytes are now known to have an active role in the regulation of synaptic transmission. Neuronal activity can evoke Ca2+ transients in astrocytes, and Ca2+ transients in astrocytes can evoke changes in neuronal activity. The excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate has been shown to mediate such bidirectional(More)
Vanilloid receptor subtype 1, VR1, is an ion channel that serves as a polymodal detector of pain-producing chemicals such as capsaicin and protons in primary afferent neurons. Here we showed that both capsaicin and acidification produced elevations in the intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)) in cultured human epidermal keratinocytes. The(More)
Accumulating findings indicate that nucleotides play an important role in cell-to-cell communication through P2 purinoceptors, even though ATP is recognized primarily to be a source of free energy and nucleotides are key molecules in cells. P2 purinoceptors are divided into two families, ionotropic receptors (P2X) and metabotropic receptors (P2Y). P2X(More)
ATP-gated ion channels (P2X) are expressed in human epidermis and cultured keratinocytes. The aim of this study was to characterize native P2X receptors in normal human epidermal keratinocytes (NHEK) using whole-cell patch clamp technique, RT-PCR, and determination of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)). Application of ATP resulted in an inward(More)
In adult mammalian brains, neural stem cells (NSCs) exist in the subventricular zone (SVZ), where persistent neurogenesis continues throughout life. Those NSCs produce neuroblasts that migrate into the olfactory bulb via formation of transit-amplifying cells, which are committed precursor cells of the neuronal lineage. In this SVZ niche, cell-cell(More)
Glial cells, especially astrocytes, are not merely supportive cells, but are important partners to neighboring cells, including neurons, vascular cells, and other glial cells. Although glial cells are not excitable in terms of electrophysiology, they have been shown to generate synchronized Ca(2+) transients (Ca(2+) oscillations) through mechanisms of(More)