Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Online ISSN : 1347-5215
Print ISSN : 0918-6158
ISSN-L : 0918-6158
Volume 47, Issue 5
Displaying 1-25 of 25 articles from this issue
Review
  • Naoko Yoshida
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 878-885
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    The existence of substandard and falsified medicines threatens people’s health and causes economic losses as well as a loss of trust in medicines. As the distribution of pharmaceuticals becomes more globalized and the spread of substandard and falsified medicines continues worldwide, pharmaceutical security measures must be strengthened. To eradicate substandard and falsified medicines, our group is conducting fact-finding investigations of medicines distributed in lower middle-income countries (LMICs) and on the Internet. From the perspective of pharmaceutics, such as physical assessment of medicines, we are working to clarify the actual situation and develop methods to detect substandard and falsified medicines. We have collected substandard and falsified medicines distributed in LMICs and on the Internet and performed pharmacopoeial tests, mainly using HPLC, which is a basic analytic method. In addition to quality evaluation, we have evaluated the applicability of various analytic methods, including observation of pharmaceuticals using an electron microscope, Raman scattering analysis, near-IR spectroscopic analysis, chemical imaging, and X-ray computed tomography (CT) to detect substandard and falsified medicines, and we have clarified their limitations. We also developed a small-scale quality screening method using statistical techniques. We are engaged in the development of methods to monitor the distribution of illegal medicines and evolve research in forensic and policy science. These efforts will contribute to the eradication of substandard and falsified medicines. Herein, I describe our experience in the development of detection methods and elucidation of the pharmaceutical status of substandard and falsified medicines using novel technologies.

  • Kahori Shimizu
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 886-894
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    The number of patients with lifestyle-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and metabolic dysfunction-associated steatotic liver disease (MASLD), formerly known as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), has continued to increase worldwide. Therefore, development of innovative therapeutic methods targeting lifestyle-related diseases is required. Gene therapy has attracted considerable attention as an advanced medical treatment. Safe and high-performance vectors are essential for the practical application of gene therapy. Replication-incompetent adenovirus (Ad) vectors are widely used in clinical gene therapy and basic research. Here, we developed a novel Ad vector, named Ad-E4-122aT, exhibiting higher and longer-term transgene expression and lower hepatotoxicity than conventional Ad vectors. We also elucidated the mechanisms underlying Ad vector-induced hepatotoxicity during the early phase using Ad-E4-122aT. Next, we examined the therapeutic effects of the genes of interest, namely zinc finger AN1-type domain 3 (ZFAND3), lipoprotein lipase (LPL), and lysophospholipid acyltransferase 10 (LPLAT10), on lifestyle-related diseases using Ad-E4-122aT. We showed that the overexpression of ZFAND3 in the liver improved glucose tolerance and insulin resistance. Liver-specific LPL overexpression suppressed hepatic lipid accumulation and improved glucose metabolism. LPLAT10 overexpression in the liver suppressed postprandial hyperglycemia by increasing glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. Furthermore, we also focused on foods to advance research on the pathophysiology and treatment of lifestyle-related diseases. Cranberry and calamondin, which are promising functional foods, attenuated the progression of MASLD/NAFLD. Our findings will aid the development of new therapeutic methods, including gene therapy, for lifestyle-related diseases such as T2DM and MASLD/NAFLD.

  • Yue Zhou, Jun-ichiro Takahashi, Hiroaki Sakurai
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 895-903
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    Epidermal growth factor (EGF)–EGF receptor (EGFR) signaling studies paved the way for a basic understanding of growth factor and oncogene signaling pathways and the development of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs). Due to resistance mutations and the activation of alternative pathways when cancer cells escape TKIs, highly diverse cell populations form in recurrent tumors through mechanisms that have not yet been fully elucidated. In this review, we summarize recent advances in EGFR basic research on signaling networks and intracellular trafficking that may clarify the novel mechanisms of inhibitor resistance, discuss recent clinical developments in EGFR-targeted cancer therapy, and offer novel strategies for cancer drug development.

Current Topics - Pharmaceutical Research for Viral Infectious Diseases
Current Topics: Review
  • Naoki Kishimoto, Shogo Misumi
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 905-911
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    Viruses require host cells to replicate and proliferate, which indicates that viruses hijack the cellular machinery. Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) primarily infects CD4-positive T cells, and efficiently uses cellular proteins to replicate. Cells already have proteins that inhibit the replication of the foreign HIV-1, but their function is suppressed by viral proteins. Intriguingly, HIV-1 infection also changes the cellular metabolism to aerobic glycolysis. This phenomenon has been interpreted as a cellular response to maintain homeostasis during viral infection, yet HIV-1 efficiently replicates even in this environment. In this review, we discuss the regulatory role of glycolytic enzymes in viral replication and the impact of aerobic glycolysis on viral infection by introducing various host proteins involved in viral replication. Furthermore, we would like to propose a “glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase-induced shock (G-shock) and kill strategy” that maximizes the antiviral effect of the glycolytic enzyme glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) to eliminate latently HIV-1-infected cells.

  • Yuki Iwaisako, Masahiro Fujimuro
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 912-916
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    The human herpesviruses (HHVs) are classified into the following three subfamilies: Alphaherpesvirinae, Betaherpesvirinae, and Gammaherpesvirinae. These HHVs have distinct pathological features, while containing a highly conserved viral replication pathway. Among HHVs, the basic viral particle structure and the sequential processes of viral replication are nearly identical. In particular, the capsid formation mechanism has been proposed to be highly similar among herpesviruses, because the viral capsid-organizing proteins are highly conserved at the structural and functional levels. Herpesviruses form capsids containing the viral genome in the nucleus of infected cells during the lytic phase, and release infectious virus (i.e., virions) to the cell exterior. In the capsid formation process, a single-unit-length viral genome is encapsidated into a preformed capsid. The single-unit-length viral genome is produced by cleavage from a viral genome precursor in which multiple unit-length viral genomes are tandemly linked. This encapsidation and cleavage is carried out by the terminase complex, which is composed of viral proteins. Since the terminase complex-mediated encapsidation and cleavage is a virus-specific mechanism that does not exist in humans, it may be an excellent inhibitory target for anti-viral drugs with high virus specificity. This review provides an overview of the functions of the terminase complexes of HHVs.

  • Yuichiro Yamamoto, Tetsuya Inoue
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 917-923
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    The global coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has devastated public health and the global economy. New variants are continually emerging because of amino acid mutations within the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. Existing neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) that target the receptor-binding domain (RBD) within the spike protein have been shown to have reduced neutralizing activity against these variants. In particular, the recently expanding omicron subvariants BQ 1.1 and XBB are resistant to nAbs approved for emergency use by the United States Food and Drug Administration. Therefore, it is essential to develop broad nAbs to combat emerging variants. In contrast to the massive accumulation of mutations within the RBD, the S2 subunit remains highly conserved among variants. Therefore, nAbs targeting the S2 region may provide effective cross-protection against novel SARS-CoV-2 variants. Here, we provide a detailed summary of nAbs targeting the S2 subunit: the fusion peptide, stem helix, and heptad repeats 1 and 2. In addition, we provide prospects to solve problems such as the weak neutralizing potency of nAbs targeting the S2 subunit.

Current Topics: Regular Article
  • Hide Sasaki, Ryo Seoka, Mayuko Yagi, Jun Komano
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 924-929
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    The region-to-region spread of human infectious diseases is considered to be dependent on the human mobility flow (HMF). However, it has been hard to obtain the evidence for this. Since the onset of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in Japan 2020, the government has enforced countermeasures against COVID-19 nationwide, namely the restriction of personal travelling, universal masking, and hand hygiene. As a result, the spread of acute respiratory infections had been effectively controlled. However, COVID-19 as well as pediatric respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infections were not well-controlled. The region-to-region spread of pediatric RSV infections in 2020–2021 was recognizable unlike those in 2018 and 2019. In this study, we investigated the correlation between the trend of regional reports of the pediatric RSV infections and the HMF based on cellular phone signal data. Upon closer examination of both epidemiological trend and HMF data, the spread of pediatric RSV infection from one region to another was logically explained by HMF, which would serve as the evidence of the dependence of regional transmission on HMF. This is the first solid evidence where this correlation has been clearly observed for the common respiratory infections. While social implementation of infection control measures has successfully suppressed the droplet-mediated respiratory infections, such as influenza, but not the airborne infections, it was suggested that the aerosol transmission and adult asymptomatic carrier were involved in the transmission of RSV akin to COVID-19.

  • Mana Murae, Shota Sakai, Non Miyata, Yoshimi Shimizu, Yuko Okemoto-Nak ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 930-940
    Published: May 01, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 01, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by the etiological agent severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). COVID-19, with the recurrent epidemics of new variants of SARS-CoV-2, remains a global public health problem, and new antivirals are still required. Some cholesterol derivatives, such as 25-hydroxycholesterol, are known to have antiviral activity against a wide range of enveloped and non-enveloped viruses, including SARS-CoV-2. At the entry step of SARS-CoV-2 infection, the viral envelope fuses with the host membrane dependent of viral spike (S) glycoproteins. From the screening of cholesterol derivatives, we found a new compound 26,27-dinorcholest-5-en-24-yne-3β,20-diol (Nat-20(S)-yne) that inhibited the SARS-CoV-2 S protein-dependent membrane fusion in a syncytium formation assay. Nat-20(S)-yne exhibited the inhibitory activities of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus entry and intact SARS-CoV-2 infection in a dose-dependent manner. Among the variants of SARS-CoV-2, inhibition of infection by Nat-20(S)-yne was stronger in delta and Wuhan strains, which predominantly invade into cells via fusion at the plasma membrane, than in omicron strains. The interaction between receptor-binding domain of S proteins and host receptor ACE2 was not affected by Nat-20(S)-yne. Unlike 25-hydroxycholesterol, which regulates various steps of cholesterol metabolism, Nat-20(S)-yne inhibited only de novo cholesterol biosynthesis. As a result, plasma membrane cholesterol content was substantially decreased in Nat-20(S)-yne-treated cells, leading to inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Nat-20(S)-yne having a new mechanism of action may be a potential therapeutic candidate for COVID-19.

Note
  • Maki Ohkubo, Emiko Seo, Kosuke Doki, Yoshiharu Suzuki, Ikuo Sekine, Ma ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 941-945
    Published: May 10, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 10, 2024
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    Hepatitis B virus reactivation (HBV-R) is a serious complication that can occur in patients with resolved HBV infection during cancer chemotherapy. We examined the levels of HBV surface antibody (HBsAb) and HBV core antibody (HBcAb) to assess the incidence of HBV-R in cancer patients including hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and rituximab administration. This retrospective cohort study included 590 patients with resolved HBV infection. The incidence of HBV-R was evaluated 761.5 (range, 90–3898) days after the inititiation of chemotherapy. Of the patients, 13 (2.2%) developed HBV-R after the start of chemotherapy. All 13 patients exhibited lower HBsAb (<100 mIU/mL) levels at baseline. A higher level of HBcAb (≥100 cut off index (C.O.I.)) was a possible risk factor for HBV-R as well as HSCT and rituximab administration. The simultaneous presence of HBsAb <100 mIU/mL and HBcAb ≥100 C.O.I. increased the risk of HBV-R by 18.5%. Patients treated with rituximab were at a higher risk of HBV-R (18.4%) despite having HBcAb <100 C.O.I. Our results suggest that assessment of HBsAb and HBcAb levels prior to the chemotherapy is important for identifying patients at high risk of HBV-R, especially in solid cancers without HSCT and rituximab administration.

Regular Article
  • Yohei Takenaka, Ryu Tanaka, Kazuki Kitabatake, Fumiaki Uchiumi, Shin A ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 946-954
    Published: May 13, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 13, 2024
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    There is accumulating evidence that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), clinically used as antidepressants, have a beneficial effect on inflammatory diseases such as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We previously compared the inhibitory effects of five U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved SSRIs on the production of an inflammatory cytokine, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and concluded that fluoxetine (FLX) showed the most potent anti-inflammatory activity. Here, we investigated the structure–activity relationship of FLX for anti-inflammatory activity towards J774.1 murine macrophages. FLX suppressed IL-6 production induced by the TLR3 agonist polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (poly(I : C)) with an IC50 of 4.76 µM. A derivative of FLX containing chlorine instead of the methylamino group lacked activity, suggesting that the methylamino group is important for the anti-inflammatory activity. FLX derivatives bearing an N-propyl or N-(pyridin-3-yl)methyl group in place of the N-methyl group exhibited almost the same activity as FLX. Other derivatives showed weaker activity, and the N-phenyl and N-(4-trifluoromethyl)benzyl derivatives were inactive. The chlorine-containing derivative also lacked inhibitory activity against TLR9- or TLR4-mediated IL-6 production. These derivatives showed similar structure–activity relationships for TLR3- and TLR9-mediated inflammatory responses. However, the activities of all amino group-containing derivatives against the TLR4-mediated inflammatory response were equal to or higher than the activity of FLX. These results indicate that the substituent at the nitrogen atom in FLX strongly influences the anti-inflammatory effect.

  • Zhiming Liu, Guangmei Xie, Zuwei Li, Hanbin Luo, Jianhong Zhou, Jie Ch ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 955-964
    Published: May 15, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 15, 2024
    Advance online publication: April 20, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    The occurrence of in-stent restenosis (ISR) poses a significant challenge for percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Thus, the promotion of vascular reendothelialization is essential to inhibit endothelial proliferation. In this study, we clarified the mechanism by which Detoxification and Activating Blood Circulation Decoction (DABCD) promotes vascular reendothelialization to avoid ISR by miRNA-126-mediated modulation of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling pathway. A rat model of post-PCI restenosis was established by balloon injury. The injured aortic segment was collected 14 and 28 d after model establishment. Our findings indicate that on the 14th and 28th days following balloon injury, DABCD reduced intimal hyperplasia and inflammation and promoted vascular reendothelialization. Additionally, DABCD markedly increased nitric oxide (NO) expression and significantly decreased ET-1 production in rat serum. DABCD also increased the mRNA level of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and the protein expression of VEGF, p-Akt, and p-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2 in vascular tissue. Unexpectedly, the expression of miR-126a-5p mRNA was significantly lower in the aortic tissue of balloon-injured rats than in the aortic tissue of control rats, and higher miR-126a-5p levels were observed in the DABCD groups. The results of this study indicated that the vascular reendothelialization effect of DABCD on arterial intimal injury is associated with the inhibition of neointimal formation and the enhancement of vascular endothelial activity. More specifically, the effects of DABCD were mediated, at least in part, through miR-126-mediated VEGF signaling pathway activation.

Communication to the Editor
  • Yuka Kiba, Takashi Tanikawa, Masashi Kitamura
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 965-966
    Published: May 17, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 17, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    The emergence of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a novel identified pneumonia resulting from the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus, has significantly impacted and posed significant challenges to human society. The papain-like protease (PLpro) found in the nonstructural protein 3 of SARS-CoV-2 plays a vital role in viral replication. Moreover, PLpro disrupts the host immune response by cleaving ubiquitin and interferon-stimulated gene 15 from host proteins. Consequently, PLpro has emerged as a promising drug target against SARS-CoV-2 infection. Computational studies have reported that ciclesonide can bind to SARS-CoV-2 PLpro. However, the inhibitory effects of ciclenoside on the PLpro have not been experimentally evaluated. Here, we evaluated the inhibitory effects of synthetic glucocorticoids (sGCs), including ciclesonide, on SARS-CoV-2 PLpro in vitro assay. Ciclesonide significantly inhibited the enzymatic activity of PLpro, compared with other sGCs and its IC50 was 18.4 ± 1.89 µM. These findings provide insights into the development of PLpro inhibitors.

Regular Article
  • Ayato Mizuno, Tomoki Nakayoshi, Koichi Kato, Eiji Kurimoto, Akifumi Od ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 967-977
    Published: May 17, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 17, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    Ensitrelvir is a noncovalent inhibitor of the main protease (Mpro) of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. Acquisition of drug resistance in virus-derived proteins is a serious therapeutic concern, and drug resistance occurs due to amino acid mutations. In this study, we computationally constructed 24 mutants, in which one residue around the active site was replaced with alanine and performed molecular dynamics simulations to the complex of Mpro and ensitrelvir to predict the residues involved in drug resistance. We evaluated the changes in the entire protein structure and ligand configuration in each of these mutants and estimated which residues were involved in ensitrelvir recognition. This method is called a virtual alanine scan. In nine mutants (S1A, T26A, H41A, M49A, L141A, H163A, E166A, V186A, and R188A), although the entire protein structure and catalytic dyad (cysteine (Cys)145 and histidine (His)41) were not significantly moved, the ensitrelvir configuration changed. Thus, it is considered that these mutants did not recognize ensitrelvir while maintaining Mpro enzymatic activities, and Ser1, Thr26, His41, Met49, Leu141, His163, Glu166, Val186, and Arg188 may be related to ensitrelvir resistance. The ligand shift noted in M49A was similar to that observed in M49I, which has been shown to be experimentally ensitrelvir resistant. These findings suggest that our research approach can predict mutations that incite drug resistance.

  • Yanxue Wang, Liang Li, Lingling Chen, Jinlei Xia, Tongli Wang, Lei Han ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 978-987
    Published: May 18, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 18, 2024
    Advance online publication: April 18, 2024
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    Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is a subtype of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) characterized by hepatic steatosis and evidence of hepatocyte injury (ballooning) and inflammation, with or without liver fibrosis. In this study, after 12 weeks of induction, the mice were treated with emodin succinyl ethyl ester (ESEE) for four weeks at doses of 10/30/90 mg/kg/d. The blood analysis of experimental endpoints showed that ESEE exhibited significant therapeutic effects on the progression of disorders of glycolipid metabolism and the induced liver injury in the model animals. Histopathological diagnosis of the liver and total triglyceride measurements revealed that ESEE had a significant therapeutic effect on the histopathological features of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease/hepatitis, such as cellular steatosis and activation of intrahepatic inflammation. Additionally, ESEE was able to improve hepatocyte fat deposition, steatosis, and the course of intrahepatic inflammatory activity. Furthermore, it showed some inhibitory effect on liver fibrosis in the model animals. In summary, this study confirms the therapeutic effects of ESEE on the NAFLD/NASH model in C57BL/6J mice induced by a high-fat, high cholesterol, and fructose diet. These effects were observed through improvements in liver function, inhibition of fibrosis, and inflammatory responses. Changes in blood glucose levels, blood lipid metabolism, liver histopathological staining, liver fibrosis staining, and related pathological scores further supported the therapeutic effects of ESEE. Therefore, this study has important implications for the exploration of novel drugs for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Note
  • Yuko Morinaga, Ryota Tanaka, Ryosuke Tatsuta, Kuniko Takano, Takehiro ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 988-996
    Published: May 18, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 18, 2024
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    Patients with hematological malignancies (HM) often receive tazobactam/piperacillin (TAZ/PIPC) and glycopeptide antibiotics for febrile neutropenia. The effect of concomitant use of TAZ/PIPC on risk of teicoplanin (TEIC)-associated acute kidney injury (AKI) remains unclear. We investigated the impact of concomitant TAZ/PIPC use on TEIC-associated AKI in HM patients and identified the risk factors. In this retrospective, single-center, observational cohort study, 203 patients received TEIC, 176 of whom satisfied the selection criteria and were divided into TEIC cohort (no TAZ/PIPC; n = 118) and TEIC + TAZ/PIPC cohort (n = 58). AKI was defined as serum creatinine increase ≥0.3 mg/dL within 48 h or ≥50% from baseline. Incidence of AKI in TEIC cohort before and after propensity score matching was 9.3 and 5.9%, respectively, and that in TEIC + TAZ/PIPC cohort was 10.3 and 11.8%. AKI incidence and risk were not significantly different between two cohorts before (p = 0.829; odds ratio (OR) 1.122, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.393–3.202) and after matching (p = 0.244; OR 2.133, 95% CI 0.503–9.043). Logistic regression analysis with factors clinically or mechanistically potentially related to TEIC-associated AKI, including concomitant TAZ/PIPC use, as independent variables identified baseline hemoglobin level as the only significant risk factor for TEIC-associated AKI (p = 0.011; OR 0.484, 95% CI 0.276–0.848). In HM patients treated with TEIC, concomitant TAZ/PIPC use did not increase AKI risk whereas lower hemoglobin levels had higher risk for TEIC-associated AKI development, suggesting the necessity to monitor serum creatinine when using TEIC in patients with anemia.

  • Makiko Fujii, Kohsuke Shibasaki, Kaname Hashizaki, Hiroyuki Taguchi
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 997-999
    Published: May 21, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 21, 2024
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    Patch tests are often used in safety evaluations to identify the substance causing skin irritation, but the same substance can sometimes give positive or negative results depending on the test conditions. Here, we investigated differences in the skin penetration of two test compounds under different application conditions. We studied the effects of the anionic surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and the nonionic surfactant polysorbate 80 (PS) on skin penetration of the preservatives methylisothiazolinone (MT) and methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCT), which are used in cosmetics such as shampoos. The skin permeation of MT was enhanced by SDS but was unchanged by PS. Skin impedance decreased in the presence of SDS whereas PS had the same effect as the control aqueous solution, suggesting that SDS reduction of the barrier function of skin affects the permeation of MT, a hydrophilic drug. Application of a mixture of MCT and MT in the presence of SDS did not affect the skin permeation of MCT whereas the permeation of MT was enhanced by SDS, indicating that the skin permeation of MCT is less affected by SDS than is MT. Thus, attention should be paid to the possible effect of co-solutes, especially hydrophilic drugs.

Regular Article
  • Hirofumi Ogino, Koichi Murano, Tomofumi Okuno, Hitoshi Ueno
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1000-1007
    Published: May 21, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 21, 2024
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    Previously, insulin resistance and hepatic oxidative stress with increased expressions of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) 1 and selenoprotein P (SelP) were induced in NSY mice, a diabetic mouse model, by administrating a high fat diet (HFD) and seleno-L-methionine (SeMet) for 12 weeks. In this study we developed an analysis method for serum selenoproteins using LC-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) and investigated the effects of supplementary selenium on serum concentrations of selenoproteins as well as protein expression in skeletal muscle as a major insulin target tissue under the same experimental condition. The glucose area under the curves for oral glucose tolerance and insulin tolerance tests indicated that the HFD induced insulin resistance, whereas the treatment of SeMet + HFD showed insignificant promotion compared with the HFD-induced insulin resistance. Although the expressions of GPx1 in gastrocnemius and soleus were not significantly induced by supplementary SeMet nor HFD administration, the expressions of SelP in both skeletal muscles were significantly induced by the treatment of SeMet + HFD. There were also significant increases in serum concentrations of SelP by supplementary SeMet + HFD administration, whereas GPx3 was augmented by supplementary SeMet only. These results indicated that the HFD intake under the sufficient selenium status augmented the blood secretion of SelP, which may participate in the reduction of insulin sensitivity in skeletal muscles as well as liver or adipose tissues, and it is a better indicator of deterioration than GPx3 as it is a major selenoprotein in serum.

  • Mohamed E. Nady, Ola M. Abd El-Raouf, El-Sayed M. El-Sayed
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1008-1020
    Published: May 24, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 24, 2024
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    The dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, a novel anti-diabetic medication family, are renoprotective in diabetes, but a comparable benefit in chronic non-diabetic kidney diseases is still under investigation. This study aimed to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of linagliptin’s (Lina) protective role in a rat model of chronic kidney injury caused by tacrolimus (TAC) independent of blood glucose levels. Thirty-two adult male Sprague Dawley rats were equally randomized into four groups and treated daily for 28 d as follows: The control group; received olive oil (1 mL/kg/d, subcutaneously), group 2; received Lina (5 mg/kg/d, orally), group 3; received TAC (1.5 mg/kg/d, subcutaneously), group 4; received TAC plus Lina concomitantly in doses as the same previous groups. Blood and urine samples were collected to investigate renal function indices and tubular injury markers. Additionally, signaling molecules, epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT), and fibrotic-related proteins in kidney tissue were assessed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and Western blot analysis, immunohistochemical and histological examinations. Tacrolimus markedly induced renal injury and fibrosis as indicated by renal dysfunction, histological damage, and deposition of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. It also increased transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1), Smad4, p-extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2/ERK1/2, and p-P38/P38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) protein levels. These alterations were markedly attenuated by the Lina administration. Moreover, Lina significantly inhibited EMT, evidenced by inhibiting Vimentin and α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and elevating E-cadherin. Furthermore, Lina diminished hypoxia-related protein levels with a subsequent reduction in Snail and Twist expressions. We concluded that Lina may protect against TAC-induced interstitial fibrosis by modulating TGF-β1 mediated EMT via Smad-dependent and independent signaling pathways.

Note
  • Rio Okada, Yuji Ikegaya, Nobuyoshi Matsumoto
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1021-1027
    Published: May 24, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 24, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    Learning and memory are affected by novel enriched environment, a condition where animals play and interact with a variety of toys and conspecifics. Exposure of animals to the novel enriched environments improves memory by altering neural plasticity during natural sleep, a process called memory consolidation. The hippocampus, a pivotal brain region for learning and memory, generates high-frequency oscillations called ripples during sleep, which is required for memory consolidation. Naturally occurring sleep shares characteristics in common with general anesthesia in terms of extracellular oscillations, guaranteeing anesthetized animals suitable to examine neural activity in a sleep-like state. However, it is poorly understood whether the preexposure of animals to the novel enriched environment modulates neural activity in the hippocampus under subsequent anesthesia. To ask this question, we allowed mice to freely explore the novel enriched environment or their standard environment, anesthetized them, and recorded local field potentials in the hippocampal CA1 area. We then compared the characteristics of hippocampal ripples between the two groups and found that the amplitude of ripples and the number of successive ripples were larger in the novel enriched environment group than in the standard environment group, suggesting that the afferent synaptic input from the CA3 area to the CA1 area was higher when the animals underwent the novel enriched environment. These results underscore the importance of prior experience that surpasses subsequent physical states from the neurophysiological point of view.

Regular Article
  • Koichiro Adachi, Katsuhiro Ohyama, Yoichi Tanaka, Norie Murayama, Maki ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1028-1032
    Published: May 24, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 24, 2024
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    Omeprazole, a gastric acid pump inhibitor, is repeatedly administered and is oxidatively metabolized mainly by polymorphic cytochrome P450 2C19. The prescribed dosage of omeprazole was discontinued or reduced in 47 of the 135 patients who received omeprazole alone in this survey, as recorded in the Japanese Adverse Drug Event Report database. The days to onset of omeprazole-related disorders were 3–4 d (median) and 16 d for intravenous 20–40 mg and oral 20 mg daily doses, respectively, in 34 patients for whom relevant data were available. The maximum plasma concentration of omeprazole was pharmacokinetically modeled after a single oral 40-mg dose in P450 2C19-defective poor metabolizers and was 2.4-fold higher than that in extensive metabolizers. The modeled area under the hepatic concentration curves of omeprazole in P450 2C19 poor metabolizers after virtual daily 40-mg doses for 7 d was 5.2-fold higher than that in the extensive metabolizers. Omeprazole-induced P450 2C19 (approx. 2-fold), resulting in increased hepatic intrinsic clearance in repeated doses, was considered after the second day. Virtual plasma/hepatic exposure estimated using pharmacokinetic modeling in subjects with P450 2C19 poor metabolizers indicated that these exposure levels virtually estimated could be one of causal factors for unexpected hepatic disorders induced by prescribed omeprazole, such as those resulting from drug interactions with repeatedly co-administered medicines.

  • Ryo Morofuji, Kazuhiro Kudo, Takahiro Honda, Shino Kinugasa, Takamasa ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1033-1042
    Published: May 25, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 25, 2024
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    Eye drops, including solutions and suspensions, are essential dosage forms to treat ophthalmic diseases, with poorly water-soluble drugs typically formulated as ophthalmic suspensions. In addition to low bioavailability, suspensions exhibit limited efficacy, safety, and usability due to the presence of drug particles. Improving bioavailability can reduce the drug concentrations and the risk of problems associated with suspended drug particles. However, practical penetration enhancers capable of improving bioavailability remain elusive. Herein, we focused on penetratin (PNT), a cell-penetrating peptide (CPP) that promotes active cellular transport related to macromolecule uptake, such as micropinocytosis. According to the in vitro corneal uptake study using a reconstructed human corneal epithelial tissue model, LabCyte CORNEA-MODEL24, PNT enhanced the uptake of Fluoresbrite® YG carboxylate polystyrene microspheres without covalent binding. In an ex vivo porcine eye model, the addition of 10 µM PNT to rebamipide ophthalmic suspension markedly improved the corneal uptake of rebamipide; however, the addition of 100 µM PNT was ineffective due to potentially increased particle size by aggregation. This article provides basic information on the application of PNT as a penetration enhancer in ophthalmic suspensions, including the in vitro and ex vivo studies mentioned above, as well as the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) cytotoxicity assay and storage stability at different pH values.

  • Tiantian Qin, Yuqing Li, Yijing Wu, Fanyan Meng, Guobiao Lin, Xing Xia
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1043-1053
    Published: May 28, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 28, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    Mogroside, the main component of Siraitia grosvenorii (Swingle) C. Jeffrey (Cucurbitaceae) is a natural product with hypoglycemic and intestinal microbiota regulating properties. However, whether the alteration of intestinal microbiota is associated with the antidiabetic effect of mogroside remains poorly understood. This study investigated the mechanism underlying the hypoglycemic effect of mogroside in regulating intestinal flora and attenuating metabolic endotoxemia. Kunming mice with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) induced by high-fat diet and intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin were randomly divided into model, pioglitazone (2.57 mg/kg) and mogroside (200, 100, and 50 mg/kg) groups. After 28 d of administration, molecular changes related to glucose metabolism and metabolic endotoxemia in mice were evaluated. The levels of insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1), cluster of differentiation 14 (CD14) and toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) mRNAs were measured, and the composition of intestinal microflora was determined by 16s ribosomal DNA (rDNA) sequencing. The results showed that mogroside treatment significantly improved hepatic glucose metabolism in T2DM mice. More importantly, mogroside treatment considerably reduced plasma endotoxin (inhibition rate 65.93%, high-dose group) and inflammatory factor levels, with a concomitant decrease in CD14 and TLR4 mRNA levels. Moreover, mogroside treatment reduced the relative abundance of Firmicutes and Proteobacteria (the inhibition rate of Proteobacteria was 85.17% in the low-dose group) and increased the relative abundance of Bacteroidetes (growth rate up to 40.57%, high-dose group) in the intestines of diabetic mice. This study reveals that mogroside can relieve T2DM, regulating intestinal flora and improving intestinal mucosal barrier, indicating that mogroside can be a potential therapeutic agent or intestinal microbiota regulator in the treatment of T2DM.

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Regular Article
  • Saki Kishinaka, Eri Kawashita, Taichi Nishizaki, Keiichi Ishihara, Sat ...
    2024 Volume 47 Issue 5 Pages 1058-1065
    Published: May 31, 2024
    Released on J-STAGE: May 31, 2024
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    Supplementary material

    Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is characterized by hepatic inflammation and fibrosis due to excessive fat accumulation. Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) is a key chemokine that infiltrates inflammatory cells into the liver during the development of NASH. Our previous studies demonstrated that a systemic deficiency of group IVA phospholipase A2 (IVA-PLA2), an enzyme that contributes to the production of lipid inflammatory mediators, protects mice against high-fat diet-induced hepatic fibrosis and markedly suppresses the CCl4-induced expression of MCP-1 in the liver. However, it remains unclear which cell types harboring IVA-PLA2 are involved in the elevated production of MCP-1. Hence, the present study assessed the types of cells responsible for IVA-PLA2-mediated production of MCP-1 using cultured hepatic stellate cells, endothelial cells, macrophages, and hepatocytes, as well as cell-type specific IVA-PLA2 deficient mice fed a high-fat diet. A relatively specific inhibitor of IVA-PLA2 markedly suppressed the expression of MCP-1 mRNA in cultured hepatic stellate cells, but the suppression of MCP-1 expression was partial in endothelial cells and not observed in monocytes/macrophages or hepatocytes. In contrast, a deficiency of IVA-PLA2 in collagen-producing cells (hepatic stellate cells), but not in other types of cells, reduced the high-fat diet-induced expression of MCP-1 and inflammatory cell infiltration in the liver. Our results suggest that IVA-PLA2 in hepatic stellate cells is critical for hepatic inflammation in the high-fat diet-induced development of NASH. This supports a potential therapeutic approach for NASH using a IVA-PLA2 inhibitor targeting hepatic stellate cells.

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