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Articles by N Okumura
Total Records ( 2 ) for N Okumura
  N Ishimine , Y Usami , S Nogi , T Sumida , Y Kurihara , K Matsuda , K Nakamura , K Yamauchi , N Okumura and M. Tozuka

In human serum, a portion of homocysteine (Hcy) exists as an N-linked form to the -amino group of protein lysine residues. N-homocysteinylated proteins differ structurally and functionally from native proteins. The present study strives to develop detection and potential semi-quantification methods for N-homocysteinylated apolipoprotein AI (N-Hcy-apoAI) in human serum.


Serum treated with or without cysteamine was supplied to isoelectric focusing (IEF) followed by an immunoblot using an anti-apoAI antibody. Cysteamine treatment increased the isoelectric point for N-Hcy-apoAI, but not for unmodified apoAI, due to the presence of -SH group(s) derived from Hcy and the absence of a cysteine residue in the apoAI molecule. N-Hcy-apoAI was semi-quantified from the scanned immunoblot pattern via a computer.


After cysteamine treatment, N-Hcy-apoAI in the serum was identified by IEF at the position with a higher pI value compared with intact apoAI. The reproducibility (between assays) of the semi-quantification method was 19.1% CV (coefficient of variation) for an average ratio 5.9% of N-Hcy-apoAI to the whole apoAI in the serum. Approximately 1.0–7.4% of apoAI was N-homocysteinylated in the serum obtained from 27 healthy subjects. Neither the ratio of N-Hcy-apoAI nor its concentration, calculated by total apoAI concentration, indicated correlation with the so-called total (free and S-linked) Hcy concentration.


We directly found that a portion of apoAI in the serum undergoes homocysteinylation in an N-linkage manner, and used this to develop a potential semi-quantification method for N-Hcy-apoAI.

  N Okumura , T Koh , Y Hasebe , T Seki and T. Ariga

Thrombin-activatable fibrinolysis inhibitor (TAFI) exhibits anti-fibrinolytic activity by removing C-terminal lysine residues from fibrin or plasminogen receptor proteins on the cellular surface, and plays an important role in the regulation of fibrinolysis. In this study, we examined the regulation of TAFI in hepatocytes during liver regeneration, and revealed its pivotal role in hepatocyte proliferation. In rat models, partial hepatectomy or carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)-induced acute liver injury suppressed the levels of plasma TAFI activity and hepatic TAFI mRNA, whereas this operation markedly increased both the hepatic plasmin activity and the level of proliferating cell nuclear antigen. In primary cultures of rat hepatocytes, the TAFI mRNA level was decreased under growth-promoting culture conditions. Treatment of the hepatocytes with TAFI siRNA increased the amount of plasmin on the hepatocytes and promoted hepatocyte proliferation. We concluded that TAFI regulates plasmin activity through its enzymatic activity whereby it reduces the plasminogen-binding capacity of the hepatocytes. The TAFI gene expression is down-regulated in hepatocyte proliferation for producing a fibrinolytic microenvironment suitable for cell growth. This is the first report on the role of TAFI in the pericellular fibrinolysis necessary for cellular proliferation.

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