Toshikazu Nakamura

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Potential repair by cell grafting or mobilizing endogenous cells holds particular attraction in heart disease, where the meager capacity for cardiomyocyte proliferation likely contributes to the irreversibility of heart failure. Whether cardiac progenitors exist in adult myocardium itself is unanswered, as is the question whether undifferentiated cardiac(More)
Rho-associated kinase (Rho-kinase), which is activated by the small GTPase Rho, phosphorylates myosin-binding subunit (MBS) of myosin phosphatase and thereby inactivates the phosphatase activity in vitro. Rho-kinase is thought to regulate the phosphorylation state of the substrates including myosin light chain (MLC), ERM (ezrin/radixin/moesin) family(More)
The rapid turnover of actin filaments and the tertiary meshwork formation are regulated by a variety of actin-binding proteins. Protein phosphorylation of cofilin, an actin-binding protein that depolymerizes actin filaments, suppresses its function. Thus, cofilin is a terminal effector of signaling cascades that evokes actin cytoskeletal rearrangement. When(More)
Lung cancer with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-activating mutations responds favorably to the EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors gefitinib and erlotinib. However, 25% to 30% of patients with EGFR-activating mutations show intrinsic resistance, and the responders invariably acquire resistance to gefitinib. Here, we showed that hepatocyte growth factor(More)
Using a rat model of ischemia/reperfusion injury, we demonstrate here that HGF is cardioprotective due to its antiapoptotic effect on cardiomyocytes. Following transient myocardial ischemia and reperfusion, c-Met/HGF receptor expression rapidly increased in the ischemic myocardium, an event accompanied by a dramatic increase in plasma HGF levels in the(More)
BACKGROUND/AIMS The autologous transplantation of bone marrow cells is a promising treatment for liver disease. Pluripotent bone marrow stem cells can differentiate into hepatocytes, but few reports address the therapeutic effect of transplanting these stem cells into damaged liver in vivo. Here, we transplanted bone marrow-derived mesenchymal cells (BMMCs)(More)
Treatment of epithelial African green monkey kidney (BSC-1) cells with the potent tumor promoter 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA) induces a rapid and reversible redistribution of actin and vinculin that is detectable after only 2 min of treatment. Within 20-40 min, stress fibers disappear, while at the same time large actin-containing ribbons(More)
In this study, we examined the subcellular distribution and functions of LIMK1 in developing neurons. Confocal microscopy, subcellular fractionation, and expression of several epitope-tagged LIMK1 constructs revealed that LIMK1 is enriched in the Golgi apparatus and growth cones, with the LIM domain required for Golgi localization and the PDZ domain for its(More)
Acquisition of a cardiac fate by embryonic mesodermal cells is a fundamental step in heart formation. Heart development in frogs and avians requires positive signals from adjacent endoderm, including bone morphogenic proteins, and is antagonized by a second secreted signal, Wnt proteins, from neural tube. By contrast, mechanisms of mesodermal commitment to(More)
Although nutrients, including amino acids and their metabolites such as serotonin (5-HT), are strong modulators of anxiety-related behavior, the metabolic pathway(s) responsible for this physiological modulation is not fully understood. Regarding tryptophan (Trp), the initial rate-limiting enzymes for the kynurenine pathway of tryptophan metabolism are(More)