Takuya Nishigaki

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Ion channels are extraordinarily efficient machines that move ions in diversely controlled manners, allowing cells to rapidly exchange information with the outside world and with other cells. Communication is the currency of fertilization, as it is of most fundamental cell signaling events. Ion channels are deeply involved in the dialogue between sperm, its(More)
Fertilization is a matter of life or death. In animals of sexual reproduction, the appropriate communication between mature and competent male and female gametes determines the generation of a new individual. Ion channels are key elements in the dialogue between sperm, its environment, and the egg. Components from the outer layer of the egg induce ion(More)
A proper dialogue between spermatozoa and the egg is essential for conception of a new individual in sexually reproducing animals. Ca(2+) is crucial in orchestrating this unique event leading to a new life. No wonder that nature has devised different Ca(2+)-permeable channels and located them at distinct sites in spermatozoa so that they can help fertilize(More)
Ion channels and transporters, key elements in sperm-egg signaling and environmental sensing, are essential for fertilization. External cues and components from the outer envelopes of the egg influence sperm ion permeability and behavior. Combining in vivo measurements of membrane potential, intracellular ions, and second messengers with new molecular(More)
Generating new life in animals by sexual reproduction depends on adequate communication between mature and competent male and female gametes. Ion channels are instrumental in the dialogue between sperm, its environment, and the egg. The ability of sperm to swim to the egg and fertilize it is modulated by ion permeability changes induced by environmental(More)
Speract, a decapeptide from sea urchin egg jelly, induces various sperm responses. Stopped-flow fluorometry was used to examine the binding of labeled speract and the intracellular changes in pH (pH(i)) and Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i) it induces in sperm. We observed significant time delays for the increase in pH(i) and [Ca2+]i induced by 200 nM speract (69 and 190 ms,(More)
Lytechinus pictus sea urchin sperm express receptors for speract, a sperm-activating peptide derived from the homologous egg jelly coat. We found that the fluorescence of fluorophore-labeled, active, speract analogs is quenched upon receptor binding. This property allowed us to perform real-time measurements of speract-receptor interactions using intact(More)
Marine invertebrate oocytes establish chemoattractant gradients that guide spermatozoa towards their source. In sea urchin spermatozoa, this relocation requires coordinated motility changes initiated by Ca(2+)-driven alterations in sperm flagellar curvature. We discovered that Lytechinus pictus spermatozoa undergo chemotaxis in response to speract, an(More)
Echinoderm sperm use cyclic nucleotides (CNs) as essential second messengers to locate and swim towards the egg. Sea urchin sperm constitute a rich source of membrane-bound guanylyl cyclase (mGC), which was first cloned from sea urchin testis by the group of David Garbers. His group also identified speract, the first sperm-activating peptide (SAP) to be(More)
Eggs of many marine and mammalian species attract sperm by releasing chemoattractants that modify the bending properties of flagella to redirect sperm paths toward the egg. This process, called chemotaxis, is dependent on extracellular Ca(2+). We used stroboscopic fluorescence imaging to measure intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) in the flagella(More)