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Articles by M Watanabe
Total Records ( 13 ) for M Watanabe
  S Kuroda , M Watanabe , T Santo , Y Shimizuishi , T Takano , Y Hidaka , T Kimura and Y. Iwatani

There are few data on oxidative stresses during and after pregnancy, although aggravation of autoimmune disease is implicated in oxidative stress and occurs frequently in the postpartum period. Thioredoxin (TRX) is a stress-inducible protein, and is used as a good biomarker for oxidative stress. To clarify the changes in the levels of oxidative stress during and after pregnancy, we examined serum TRX levels and the numbers of lymphocyte subsets.


We measured serum TRX levels by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and neutrophils, lymphocytes, and CD4 and CD8 lymphocytes by flow cytometry in peripheral blood from 88 healthy pregnant women, 26 just after delivery women, 77 healthy postpartum women and 19 healthy non-pregnant women.


The serum levels of TRX did not change during pregnancy, but increased in four, seven and 10 months postpartum. Serum TRX levels were correlated with the percentages of neutrophils in normal non-pregnant women and women one month postpartum, and with those of CD8 lymphocytes in early pregnant women and women one and four months postpartum.


Oxidative stress increased in the postpartum period, and the levels at one and four months postpartum were related to CD8 lymphocytes.

  K Kuromoto , M Watanabe , K Adachi , K Ohashi and Y. Iwatani

It is important to predict the development of pre-eclampsia (PE) during early pregnancy to prevent its occurrence later on. In this study, we studied urinary biochemical parameters and blood pressure (BP) during and after pregnancy to find useful parameters for predicting PE.


A case-control study was performed in 25 PE patients and 172 normotensive pregnant women. Twelve biochemical parameters were measured in spot urine, and the systolic and diastolic BPs were measured using an automated device during pregnancy and six to eight weeks after birth.


A multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the combinations of urinary creatinine (Cr) and systolic BP (SBP) in the first trimester of pregnancy (8.9 ± 2.6 weeks), and of urinary inorganic phosphorus (IP)/Cr and SBP in the second trimester of pregnancy (19.0 ± 1.6 weeks) were useful for predicting PE. The area under the curve in the receiver operator characteristic curve of the combination of urinary Cr and SBP in the first trimester was 0.85 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.74–0.96), and that of the combination of urinary IP/Cr and SBP in the second trimester was 0.91 (95% CI: 0.86–0.97). When used 249 mg/dL in urinary Cr and 128 mmHg in SBP as their cut-off points, the combination in the first trimester increased the accuracy (sensitivity 75% and specificity 95%) in predicting PE, as compared with that of urinary Cr (29%, 99%) or SBP (50%, 98%).


Combination of urinary Cr and SBP in early pregnancy and that of urinary IP/Cr and SBP in mid-pregnancy are useful for the prediction of PE.

  M Anheim , B Monga , M Fleury , P Charles , C Barbot , M Salih , J. P Delaunoy , M Fritsch , L Arning , M Synofzik , L Schols , J Sequeiros , C Goizet , C Marelli , I Le Ber , J Koht , J Gazulla , J De Bleecker , M Mukhtar , N Drouot , L Ali Pacha , T Benhassine , M Chbicheb , A M'Zahem , A Hamri , B Chabrol , J Pouget , R Murphy , M Watanabe , P Coutinho , M Tazir , A Durr , A Brice , C Tranchant and M. Koenig

Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) is an autosomal recessive disease due to mutations in the senataxin gene, causing progressive cerebellar ataxia with peripheral neuropathy, cerebellar atrophy, occasional oculomotor apraxia and elevated alpha-feto-protein (AFP) serum level. We compiled a series of 67 previously reported and 58 novel ataxic patients who underwent senataxin gene sequencing because of suspected AOA2. An AOA2 diagnosis was established for 90 patients, originating from 15 countries worldwide, and 25 new senataxin gene mutations were found. In patients with AOA2, median AFP serum level was 31.0 µg/l at diagnosis, which was higher than the median AFP level of AOA2 negative patients: 13.8 µg/l, P = 0.0004; itself higher than the normal level (3.4 µg/l, range from 0.5 to 17.2 µg/l) because elevated AFP was one of the possible selection criteria. Polyneuropathy was found in 97.5% of AOA2 patients, cerebellar atrophy in 96%, occasional oculomotor apraxia in 51%, pyramidal signs in 20.5%, head tremor in 14%, dystonia in 13.5%, strabismus in 12.3% and chorea in 9.5%. No patient was lacking both peripheral neuropathy and cerebellar atrophy. The age at onset and presence of occasional oculomotor apraxia were negatively correlated to the progression rate of the disease (P = 0.03 and P = 0.009, respectively), whereas strabismus was positively correlated to the progression rate (P = 0.03). An increased AFP level as well as cerebellar atrophy seem to be stable in the course of the disease and to occur mostly at or before the onset of the disease. One of the two patients with a normal AFP level at diagnosis had high AFP levels 4 years later, while the other had borderline levels. The probability of missing AOA2 diagnosis, in case of sequencing senataxin gene only in non-Friedreich ataxia non-ataxia-telangiectasia ataxic patients with AFP level ≥7 µg/l, is 0.23% and the probability for a non-Friedreich ataxia non-ataxia-telangiectasia ataxic patient to be affected with AOA2 with AFP levels ≥7 µg/l is 46%. Therefore, selection of patients with an AFP level above 7 µg/l for senataxin gene sequencing is a good strategy for AOA2 diagnosis. Pyramidal signs and dystonia were more frequent and disease was less severe with missense mutations in the helicase domain of senataxin gene than with missense mutations out of helicase domain and deletion and nonsense mutations (P = 0.001, P = 0.008 and P = 0.01, respectively). The lack of pyramidal signs in most patients may be explained by masking due to severe motor neuropathy.

  J. Y Park , K Matsuo , T Suzuki , H Ito , S Hosono , T Kawase , M Watanabe , I Oze , T Hida , Y Yatabe , T Mitsudomi , T Takezaki , K Tajima and H. Tanaka

The main lifestyle contributor to acetaldehyde exposure is the drinking of alcoholic beverages, but tobacco smoke also makes some contribution. Although acetaldehyde is associated with upper aerodigestive tract cancer risk, in accordance with genetically determined acetaldehyde metabolism, it is unclear whether lung cancer, a representative smoking-related cancer, is associated with acetaldehyde or genes impacting its metabolism. We conducted a case–control study to examine possible interaction between smoking and aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2) Glu504Lys polymorphism (rs671) on the risk of lung cancer in Japanese. Subjects were 718 lung cancer cases and 1416 non-cancer controls enrolled in the Hospital-based Epidemiologic Research Program at Aichi Cancer Center. Lifestyle factors, including smoking, were determined by self-administered questionnaire. We applied pack-years (PY; categorized into five levels: never, <15, <30, <45 and ≥45) as a marker of cumulative exposure to smoking. The impact of smoking, ALDH2 genotype, and their interaction on lung cancer risk were assessed by odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval adjusted for potential confounders. Adjusted ORs for PY <15, <30, <45 and ≥45 relative to never smokers among those with Glu/Glu or Glu/Lys were 1.39, 1.80, 3.44 and 6.25, respectively (P-trend = 1.4 x 10–30). In contrast, ORs among Lys/Lys were 1.01, 10.2, 11.4 and 23.2, respectively (P-trend = 2.6 x 10–7). Interaction between ALDH2 genotype (Glu/Glu + Glu/Lys versus Lys/Lys) and cumulative smoking dose was statistically significant (P = 0.036) and was consistently observed in the analysis among never-drinkers (interaction P = 0.041). These results suggest that ALDH2 Lys/Lys, a null enzyme activity genotype, modifies the impact of smoking on the risk of lung cancer.

  N Inoue , T Okamura , Y Kokubo , Y Fujita , Y Sato , M Nakanishi , K Yanagida , A Kakino , S Iwamoto , M Watanabe , S Ogura , K Otsui , H Matsuda , K Uchida , R Yoshimoto and T. Sawamura

Background: Lectin-like oxidized LDL receptor 1 (LOX-1) is implicated in atherothrombotic diseases. Activation of LOX-1 in humans can be evaluated by use of the LOX index, obtained by multiplying the circulating concentration of LOX-1 ligands containing apolipoprotein B (LAB) times that of the soluble form of LOX-1 (sLOX-1) [LOX index = LAB x sLOX-1]. This study aimed to establish the prognostic value of the LOX index for coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke in a community-based cohort.

Methods: An 11-year cohort study of 2437 residents age 30–79 years was performed in an urban area located in Japan. Of these, we included in the analysis 1094 men and 1201 women without history of stroke and CHD. We measured LAB and sLOX-1 using ELISAs with recombinant LOX-1 and monoclonal anti–apolipoprotein B antibody and with 2 monoclonal antibodies against LOX-1, respectively.

Results: During the follow-up period, there were 68 incident cases of CHD and 91 cases of stroke (with 60 ischemic strokes). Compared with the bottom quartile, the hazard ratio (HR) of the top quartile of LOX index was 1.74 (95% CI 0.92–3.30) for stroke and 2.09 (1.00–4.35) for CHD after adjusting for sex, age, body mass index, drinking, smoking, hypertension, diabetes, non-HDL cholesterol, and use of lipid-lowering agents. Compared with the bottom quartile of LOX index, the fully adjusted HRs for ischemic stroke were consistently high from the second to the top quartile: 3.39 (95% CI 1.34–8.53), 3.15 (1.22–8.13) and 3.23 (1.24–8.37), respectively.

Conclusions: Higher LOX index values were associated with an increased risk of CHD. Low LOX index values may be protective against ischemic stroke.

  E Avsar Ban , H Ishikawa , H Manya , M Watanabe , S Akiyama , H Miyake , T Endo and Y. Tamaru

Two distinct cDNAs corresponding to two zebrafish protein O-mannosyltransferase genes, zPOMT1 and zPOMT2, were cloned from early developmental embryos. Gene expression analysis revealed that zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 were expressed in similar patterns during early embryonic development and in all adult tissues. To study the regulation of zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 mRNA distribution during zebrafish embryogenesis, we injected enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) mRNA fused to the 3'untranslated regions of each zPOMT gene. The distribution of EGFP resulting from the two constructs was similar. Injection of antisense morpholino oligonucleotides of zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 resulted in several severe phenotypes—including bended body, edematous pericaridium and abnormal eye pigmentation. Immunohistochemistry using anti-glycosylated -dystroglycan antibody (IIH6) and morphological analysis revealed that the phenotypes of zPOMT2 knockdown were more severe than those of zPOMT1 knockdown, even though the IIH6 reactivity was lost in both zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 morphants. Finally, only when both zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 were expressed in human embryonic kidney 293T cells were high levels of protein O-mannosyltransferase activity detected, indicating that both zPOMT1 and zPOMT2 were required for full enzymatic activity. Moreover, either heterologous combination, zPOMT1 and human POMT2 (hPOMT2) or hPOMT1 and zPOMT2, resulted in enzymatic activity in cultured cells. These results indicate that the protein O-mannosyltransferase machinery in zebrafish and humans is conserved and suggest that zebrafish may be useful for functional studies of protein O-mannosylation.

  A Tsunoda , K Nakao , M Watanabe , N Matsui and Y. Tsunoda

Adjuvant chemotherapy with oral uracil/tegafur plus leucovorin has been acknowledged to be a standard treatment for Stage II or III cancer of the colon. The objective of the study was to examine the health-related quality of life during treatment in patients with colorectal cancer who receive oral uracil/tegafur plus leucovorin.


Health-related quality of life was assessed at baseline (pre-treatment) and at 5-week intervals during treatment, using the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer QLQ-C30 questionnaires. Health-related quality of life data for five courses of treatment were then analyzed longitudinally.


Ninety-four patients completed the baseline and post-treatment health-related quality of life assessments. The post-treatment assessments changed significantly from the baseline values and favored post-treatment for all the scales except cognitive function, dyspnea, insomnia, constipation and diarrhea. Role function and social function changed by 10 or more points considered clinically significant. Most of the scales in patients with Grade 0–1 toxicities were better than those with Grade 2–3 toxicities, but Grade 2–3 toxicities were not associated with post-treatment deteriorations in health-related quality of life. The development of Grade 3 toxicities negatively affected on the four scales at the next assessment, compared with Grade 1–2 toxicities.


Overall health-related quality of life did not deteriorate during adjuvant chemotherapy with oral uracil/tegafur plus leucovorin in patients with colorectal cancer, despite the effect from surgical damage, whereas the development of Grade 3 toxicities negatively affected on short-term health-related quality of life. Further comparative studies are needed.

  H Kobayashi , T Uno , K Isobe , N Ueno , M Watanabe , R Harada , Y Takiguchi , K Tatsumi and H. Ito

To examine the effects of dose–volume factors on the development of radiation pneumonitis in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer who received twice-daily radiotherapy concurrently with carboplatin and paclitaxel chemotherapy.


Radiotherapy consisted of twice-daily fractionation of 1.2 Gy, to a total dose of 60 Gy. Weekly carboplatin and paclitaxel were used as a concurrent chemotherapy. Effects of radiotherapy parameters on the development of radiation pneumonitis were retrospectively analyzed.


Fourteen of 37 patients developed Grade 2 or worse (≥G2) radiation pneumonitis. Grade 2 or worse radiation pneumonitis occurred in all 5 patients with V5 >40%, all 4 patients with V10 >35%, all 4 patients with V13 >32%, 9 of 14 patients with V20 >24% and 8 of 11 patients with V30 >22%, whereas 9 of 32 patients with V5 <40%, 10 of 33 patients with V10 <35%, 10 of 33 patients with V13 <32%, 5 of 23 patients with V20 <24% and 6 of 26 patients with V30 <22%, with respective P values of 0.0045, 0.015, 0.015, 0.015 and 0.008. Eight of 11 patients with a mean lung dose of >14 Gy developed ≥G2 radiation pneumonitis in contrast to 6 of 26 patients with a mean lung dose of <14 Gy (P = 0.008).


Several cut-off values in the Vdose and the mean lung dose differentiating probabilities of developing ≥G2 radiation pneumonitis were identified in this combination therapy.

  T Tsurui , M Wataru , M Watanabe , T Katsumata and Y. Inaguma

High-resolution electron microscopy (HREM) and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) studies of (La, M)TiO3 (M = Zn, Mn) prepared by M/Li ion exchange were performed to clarify the microscopic mechanism of ion-exchange reactions. At a macroscopic level, EDS analysis revealed that Zn and Mn atoms were homogeneously dispersed in matrix grains of (La, Zn)TiO3 and (La, Mn)TiO3 samples, respectively. EDS analysis also revealed that no segregation of Zn and Mn atoms was observed even in the vicinity of grain boundary regions. HREM and EDS analysis demonstrated that the microscopic mechanism of ion-exchange reactions was different by the ion-exchanged metals.

  Y Hozumi , M Watanabe and K. Goto

The pituitary gland dynamically changes its hormone output under various pathophysiological conditions. One of the pathways implicated in the regulatory mechanism of this gland is a dopaminergic system that operates the phosphoinositide (PI) cycle to transmit downstream signal through second messengers. We have previously shown that diacylglycerol kinase β (DGKβ) is coexpressed with dopamine D1 and D2 receptors in medium spiny neurons of the striatum, suggesting a plausible implication of DGKβ in dopaminergic transmission. However, it remains elusive whether DGKβ is involved in the dopaminergic system in the pituitary gland. The aim of this study is to investigate the expression and localization of DGK in the pituitary gland, together with the molecular components involved in the PI signaling cascade, including dopamine receptors, phospholipase C (PLC), and a major downstream molecule, protein kinase C (PKC). Here we show that DGKβ and the dopamine D2 receptor are coexpressed in the intermediate lobe and localize to the plasma membrane side by side. In addition, we reveal that PLCβ4 and PKC are the subtypes expressed in the intermediate lobe among those families. These findings will substantiate and further extend our understanding of the molecular-anatomical pathway of PI signaling and the functional roles of DGK in the pituitary intermediate lobe. (J Histochem Cytochem 58:119–129, 2010)

  M Watanabe , H. M Hubberten , K Saito and R. Hoefgen

Sulfate is an essential macronutrient for plants. Plants have developed strategies to cope with sulfate deficiency, and other nutrient ion limitations. However, the regulation of these adaptive responses and the coordinating signals that underlie them are still poorly characterized. O-acetylserine (OAS) is a marker metabolite of sulfate starvation and has been speculated to have a signaling function. OAS is synthesized by the enzyme serine acetyltransferase (SERAT), which is encoded by five distinct genes in Arabidopsis. We investigated quadruple knockout mutants of SERAT that retained only one functional isoform. These mutants displayed symptoms of sulfate starvation. Furthermore, some of them displayed phenotypes typical of prolonged sulfate starvation, in particular, developmental programs associated with senescence or stress responses. Thus, we compared metabolite and transcriptome data from these mutants with N-, P-, K-, and S-depleted plants. This revealed many similarities with general nutrient-depletion-induced senescence (NuDIS), indicating the recruitment of existing regulatory programs for nutrient-starvation responses. Several candidate genes that could be involved in these processes were identified, including transcription factors and other regulatory proteins, as well as the functional categories of their target genes. These results outline components of the regulatory network controlling plant development under sulfate stress, forming a basis for further investigations to elucidate the complete network. In turn, this will advance our broader understanding of plant responses to a range of other nutrient stresses.

  M Watanabe , M Yumoto , H Tanaka , H. H Wang , T Katayama , S Yoshiyama , J Black , S. E Thatcher and K. Kohama

To explore the precise mechanisms of the inhibitory effects of blebbistatin, a potent inhibitor of myosin II, on smooth muscle contraction, we studied the blebbistatin effects on the mechanical properties and the structure of contractile filaments of skinned (cell membrane permeabilized) preparations from guinea pig taenia cecum. Blebbistatin at 10 µM or higher suppressed Ca2+-induced tension development at any given Ca2+ concentration but had little effects on the Ca2+-induced myosin light chain phosphorylation. Blebbistatin also suppressed the 10 and 2.75 mM Mg2+-induced, "myosin light chain phosphorylation-independent" tension development at more than 10 µM. Furthermore, blebbistatin induced conformational change of smooth muscle myosin (SMM) and disrupted arrangement of SMM and thin filaments, resulting in inhibition of actin-SMM interaction irrespective of activation with Ca2+. In addition, blebbistatin partially inhibited Mg2+-ATPase activity of native actomyosin from guinea pig taenia cecum at around 10 µM. These results suggested that blebbistatin suppressed skinned smooth muscle contraction through disruption of structure of SMM by the agent.

  K Nagamatsu , A Kuwae , T Konaka , S Nagai , S Yoshida , M Eguchi , M Watanabe , H Mimuro , S Koyasu and A. Abe

The inflammatory response is one of several host alert mechanisms that recruit neutrophils from the circulation to the area of infection. We demonstrate that Bordetella, a bacterial pathogen, exploits an antiinflammatory cytokine, interleukin-10 (IL-10), to evade the host immune system. We identified a Bordetella effector, BopN, that is translocated into the host cell via the type III secretion system, where it induces enhanced production of IL-10. Interestingly, the BopN effector translocates itself into the nucleus and is involved in the down-regulation of mitogen-activated protein kinases. Using pharmacological blockade, we demonstrated that BopN-induced IL-10 production is mediated, at least in part, by its ability to block the extracellular signal-regulated kinase pathway. We also showed that BopN blocks nuclear translocation of nuclear factor B p65 (NF-Bp65) but, in contrast, promotes nuclear translocation of NF-Bp50. A BopN-deficient strain was unable to induce IL-10 production in mice, resulting in the elimination of bacteria via neutrophil infiltration into the pulmonary alveoli. Furthermore, IL-10–deficient mice effectively eliminated wild-type as well as BopN mutant bacteria. Thus, Bordetella exploits BopN as a stealth strategy to shut off the host inflammatory reaction. These results explain the ability of Bordetella species to avoid induction of the inflammatory response.

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