Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Past featured articles
Showing 1-13 articles out of 13 articles
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  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 12 Pages 2158-2165
    Evaluation of Drug-Induced Photosensitivity Using the Japanese Adverse Drug Event Report (JADER) Database Read more
    Editor’s picks

    Drug-induced photosensitivity (DIP) is a cutaneous adverse event caused by the combined effects of a medication and exposure to light. The article by Nakao et al.  evaluated the association between drugs and DIP by using the reporting odds ratio and time-to-onset analysis data from the Japanese Adverse Drug Event Report (JADER) database. More than half of the reports of DIP onset following ketoprofen administration were recorded within 10 days of initiation of treatment. The seasonal variation of DIP was shown to follow an annual sinusoidal pattern with peaks observed in April and May. The results of this study suggest close monitoring of patients taking suspected drugs, especially during the peak season of photosensitivity reactions.

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 11 Pages 1968-1975
    The Truncated Isoform of the Receptor Tyrosine Kinase ALK Generated by Alternative Transcription Initiation (ALKATI) Induces Chromatin Structural Changes in the Nucleus in a Kinase Activity-Dependent Manner Read more
    Editor’s picks

    Because tyrosine kinases mainly localize to the cytoplasm or the plasma membrane, most studies have focused on their roles in the cytoplasm. However, emerging evidence has revealed that tyrosine kinases also localize to the nucleus and regulate nuclear events, such as DNA damage responses, gene expression, and chromatin structural changes. In this paper, Takakura et al. showed that the truncated isoform of the receptor tyrosine kinase ALK (ALK ATI), which only has the intracellular kinase domain, regulates chromatin structural changes, heterochromatinization, and gene expression in the nucleus. This paper is the first report shedding light on the nuclear roles of ALK.

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 9 Pages 1468-1474
    Up-Regulation of the Voltage-Gated KV2.1 K+ Channel in the Renal Arterial Myocytes of Dahl Salt-Sensitive Hypertensive Rats Read more
    Editor’s picks

    Salt-sensitive hypertension induces renal injury via decreased blood flow in the renal artery. Voltage-gated, delayed-rectifier K+ (KV) channels play key roles in the regulation of vascular tone, and their dysfunction in arterial myocytes may be involved in the higher vascular resistance. In their report, Ogiwara et al. described that there is a large contribution of KV2.1 to the resting tension maintenance of renal artery in Dahl salt-sensitive hypertensive rats and suggested the up-regulation of the KV2.1 channel in renal artery might be involved in the compensatory mechanisms against decreased renal blood flow in salt-sensitive hypertension.



  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 8 Pages 1183-1191
    Characterization of Membrane Integrity and Morphological Stability of Human Salivary Exosomes Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Kumeda et al. examined Membrane integrity and morphological stability of salivary exosomes using dipeptidyl peptidase IV and CD9 as membrane makers, and Alix and Tsg101 as lumen markers. Neither localization nor levels of these marker proteins were changed in isolated exosomes after long-term storage at 4°C or multiple freeze-thaw cycles. Moreover, intact exosomes could be isolated from whole saliva refrigerated for a month. Components inside the exosomes were stable even after solubilization of membrane components with detergents such as Triton X-100. These results indicate that human saliva-derived exosomes are very stable, maintaining their membrane integrity over a long storage period.

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 7 Pages 1029-1034
    Antioxidative Protection of Squalene Adjuvant and Rabies Vaccine with Adjuvant Read more
    Editor’s picks

    The composition of the adjuvant emulsions was 2.5% squalene, 6% detergents, 0.5% antioxidant – α-tocopherol or β-carotene and 91% water phase. Antioxidant effectivity was testing by determination of peroxide value. α-tocopherol acted as a prooxidant, β-carotene was an effective antioxidant. Effectiveness of rabies vaccine with squalene adjuvant was testing on mice. Adjuvanted vaccine with β-carotene was compared to vaccine without antioxidant and induced a slower but prolonged immunity response with protective levels of rabies antibodies (0.5 IU/mL).

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 6 Pages 815-823
    Effective-Loading of Platinum–Chloroquine into PEGylated Neutral and Cationic Liposomes as a Drug Delivery System for Resistant Malaria Parasites Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Ibrahim et al. described that generating platinum chloroquine diphosphate dichloride (PtCQ)-loaded polyethylene glycol (PEG)-modified (PEGylated) cationic liposomes exhibiting high drug encapsulation and high drug retention. PtCQ was encapsulated in PEGylated cationic liposomes comprising various amounts of cationic lipids using the remote-loading method. PEGylated neutral liposomes and cationic liposomes exhibited minimum leakage of PtCQ after two months’ storage at 4˚C, and further exhibited little release under in vitro culture conditions at 37˚C for 72 hours. These results provide a useful framework for the design of future liposome-based in vivo drug delivery systems targeting the drug-resistant malaria parasite.

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 594-597
    Cost-Outcome Description of PEG-IFN-α2b+RBV for Hepatitis C: Results Based on the Interferon Database Read more
    Editor’s picks

    Economic evaluation has been recently carried out using real-world data instead of clinical trial data. Akutagawa et al. conducted a cost-outcome description based on a nationwide registry providing information on hepatitis treatment in Japan and estimated the utility of the analysis. Specifically, they evaluated the cost-outcome description of a 48-week peginterferon plus ribavirin treatment in patients infected by the hepatitis C virus. Simulations were based on a Markov model. After setting the cohorts using data from the registry, and assuming a societal perspective for the calculation of costs, they estimated 2.5 million JPY per quality-adjusted life years (QALY) for treatments over a 10-year period. They analyzed patients’ statistics at each disease stage using their registry data and calculated the costs. Their results reflect more closely a real-world clinical situation as compared to the widely used clinical trial method.



  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 4 Pages 495-503
    Growth Inhibition of Refractory Human Gallbladder Cancer Cells by Retinol, and Its Mechanism of Action Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Li et al. described that vitamin A (retinol) inhibits cancer cell growth via endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. Retinal is a more potent suppressor of refractory human gallbladder cancer cell growth linked to tumor progression than retinoic acid (RA). Although cellular incorporation of RA is higher than retinol, it was not correlated with anti-proliferative activity. Retinol did not induce apoptosis or suppress MEK/ERK and PI3K/Akt pathways. However, it significantly increased the expression of ER stress related genes and autophagy-associated protein (LC3-II) and the number of cells in the G0/G1 phase. This result indicates that retinol suppresses gallbladder cancer cell growth by mechanisms involving ER stress, autophagy, and cell cycle delay. Retinol might be useful for the prevention and treatment of cancer.



  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 3 Pages 297-302
    An Activatable Fluorescent γ-Polyglutamic Acid Complex for Sentinel Lymph Node Imaging Read more
    Editor’s picks

    Sentinel lymph nodes (SLN) are the first LN where cancer cells metastasize from the primary tumor. As an activatable fluorescence probe to detect the SLNs, Hagimori et al. developed ternary anionic nanoparticles constructed with fluorophore (TAMRA)-labeled polyamidoamine dendrimer conjugated with diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid (TAMRA-G4-DTPA), quencher-labeled polyethyleneimine (PEI-QSY7 or PEI-BHQ2), and g-polyglutamic acid, namely TAMRA-G4-DTPA/PEI-QSY7/g-PGA and TAMRA-G4-DTPA/PEI-BHQ2/g-PGA by the electrostatic self-assembly system. The fluorescence of these complexes was quenched by a strong stacking interaction of TAMRA and quenchers, but was dequenched by dissociation of complexes when taken up by inflammatory cells (high populations in LN). They performed fluorescence imaging at 24 h after intradermal injection of TAMRA-G4-DTPA/PEI-QSY7/g-PGA into mouse footpads. Then, TAMRA fluorescence signal was clearly visualized in popliteal lymph node with high contrast.

  • Volume 40 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 82-87
    Cobalt Chloride Induces Expression and Function of Breast Cancer Resistance Protein (BCRP/ABCG2) in Human Renal Proximal Tubular Epithelial Cell Line HK-2 Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Nishihashi et al. describe in detail that cobalt chloride-induced activation of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) increases not only mRNA and protein expression but also function of breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP/ABCG2) in a human renal proximal tubular epithelial cell line. HIF-1 consists of an inducible a-subunit (HIF-1a) and a constitutive b-subunit (HIF-1b). The stabilization of HIF-1a under hypoxia and various biochemical stimuli leads to nuclear translocation, dimerization with HIF-1b and binding to hypoxia response element (HRE) sequences in the promoter of various target genes. The present results indicate that HIF-1 plays an important role in modulating BCRP-mediated transport activity in renal proximal tubular epithelial cells.

  • Volume 39 (2016) Issue 11 Pages 1868-1875
    Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis Is Part of the Skin Flora on the Hands of Both Healthy Individuals and Hospital Workers Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Watanabe et al. described the prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis (MRSE), one of the major nosocomial pathogens, on the hands of healthy individuals and hospital workers. The detection rates of MRSE in community pharmacists (92.3%) and students (87.5%) were higher than those in hospital workers (66.7% to 81.8%). Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) analysis strongly suggested that the MRSE strains on the hands of hospital workers and students were normal inhabitants of each subject. Their results lead to a new finding that MRSE is commonly colonized on the hands of not only hospital workers but also of healthy individuals.



  • Volume 39 (2016) Issue 10 Pages 1687-1693
    Sustained Release of Mitomycin C from Its Conjugate with Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Associated by Pegylated Peptide Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Ohta et al. described that single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) with superior dispersion stability in water are expected to serve as a good drug delivery system carrier in various biomedical applications. The SWCNTs composites with designed peptide having polyethylene glycol (PEG) modification were further conjugated with mitomycin C (MMC) for achieving its controlled release. The obtained conjugate of SWCNTs composites and MMC showed good dispersion stability even under physiological conditions. The release of MMC followed the first-order kinetics with half-lives of 32.2-256.2 hours being accelerated by the pH increase. In addition, the MMC conjugate demonstrated the antitumor activity with delayed growth inhibition comparing with free MMC.

  • Volume 39 (2016) Issue 9 Pages 1496-1507
    Next-Generation Sequencing of Protein-Coding and Long Non-protein-Coding RNAs in Two Types of Exosomes Derived from Human Whole Saliva Read more
    Editor’s picks

    In their report, Ogawa et al. described next-generation sequencing of protein-coding and long non-protein-coding RNAs in two types of exosomes derived from human whole saliva. Exosomes are small extracellular vesicle released from variety types of cells. They contain proteins and nucleic acids transferred to recipient cells. Human whole saliva contains two types of exosomes (exosomes I and II) that are different in size, proteome and small RNA transcriptome. In this study, they investigated the compositions of protein-coding RNAs and long non-protein-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) of exosome I, exosome II and whole saliva by next-generation sequencing technology. Interestingly, lncRNAs of pseudogenes were abundant in exosomes and whole saliva. Their results may highlight a new function of exosomes in regulation of gene expression. 

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