Toshio Akimoto

Nippon Medical School, Edo, Tōkyō, Japan

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Publications (16)35.38 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Purpose Ejaculation in the male dog consists of three fractions. Observation of behavior and measurement of heart rate (HR), and plasma noradrenaline (NA) and adrenaline (Ad) concentrations were researched sequentially, and a fundamental examination of the features of sympathetic nerve activity during copulatory behavior induced by the hand method in the male dog was undertaken. Methods We investigated the breeding capability of male dogs. HR, plasma NA level and plasma Ad levels were measured during ejaculation induced by the hand method. Results HR was 125.8 ± 6.0 beats/min at rest, and peaked during mounting at 195.2 ± 8.2 beats/min. Moreover, HR at 3 min after the first fraction decreased to values similar to those at rest. Plasma NA and Ad concentrations during copulatory behavior induced by the hand method did not differ significantly from those at rest. However, although there was no significant difference, plasma NA concentration during ejaculation of the third fraction peaked at about 1.8 times the baseline value. Conclusions In the male dog, excitation of sympathetic nerves of long duration during erection of the penis and ejaculation is questionable. However, inhibition of sympathetic nerves and activation of parasympathetic nerves is thought to occur during erection of the penis and ejaculation.
    Reproductive Medicine and Biology 01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Background/Aims: Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are zinc endopeptidases that degrade extracellular matrix and are involved in the pathogenesis of ischemic damage in acute kidney injury (AKI). In the present study, we analyzed the role of MMP-2 in the repair process in ischemic AKI. Methods: AKI was induced in MMP-2 wild-type (MMP-2(+/+)) and MMP-2-deficient (MMP-2(-/-)) mice by 90-min renal artery clamping followed by reperfusion. Renal histology and the activity and distribution of MMP-2 were examined from day 1 to day 14. During the recovery from AKI, MMP-2(+/+) mice were also treated with MMP-2/MMP-9 inhibitor. Results: In both MMP-2(+/+) and MMP-2(-/-) mice, AKI developed on day 1 after ischemia/reperfusion with widespread acute tubular injury, but subsequent epithelial cell proliferation was evident on days 3-7. During the repair process, active MMP-2 and MMP-9 increased in regenerating tubular epithelial cells in MMP-2(+/+) mice on days 7-14, and the tubular repair process was almost complete by day 14. On the other hand, in MMP-2(-/-) mice, less prominent proliferation of tubular epithelial cells was evident on days 3 and 7, and damaged tubules that were covered with elongated and immature regenerated epithelial cells were identified on days 7 and 14. Incomplete recovery of injured microvasculature was also noted with persistent macrophage infiltration. Similarly, treatment with MMP-2/MMP-9 inhibitor resulted in impaired recovery in MMP-2(+/+) mice. Conclusion: MMP-2 is involved in tubular repair after AKI. The use of the MMP-2/MMP-9 inhibitor was a disadvantage when it was administered during the repair stage of ischemic AKI. Treatment with MMP inhibitor for AKI needs to be modified to enhance recovery from AKI.
    Nephron Experimental Nephrology 03/2013; 122(1-2):23-35. · 2.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Our previous studies revealed that application of the inhalation anesthetic, sevoflurane, reversibly repressed the expression of Per2 in the mouse suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). We aimed to examine whether sevoflurane directly affects the SCN. We performed in vivo and in vitro experiments to investigate rat Per2 expression under sevoflurane-treatment. The in vivo effects of sevoflurane on rPer2 expression were examined by quantitative in situ hybridization with a radioactively-labeled cRNA probe. Additionally, we examined the effect of sevoflurane anesthesia on rest/activity rhythms in the rat. In the in vitro experiments, we applied sevoflurane to SCN explant cultures from Per2-dLuc transgenic rats, and monitored luciferase bioluminescence, representing Per2 promoter activity. Bioluminescence from two peripheral organs, the kidney cortex and the anterior pituitary gland, were also analyzed. Application of sevoflurane in rats significantly suppressed Per2 expression in the SCN compared with untreated animals. We observed no sevoflurane-induced phase-shift in the rest/activity rhythms. In the in vitro experiments, the intermittent application of sevoflurane repressed the increase of Per2-dLuc luminescence and led to a phase delay in the Per2-dLuc luminescence rhythm. Sevoflurane treatment did not suppress bioluminescence in the kidney cortex or the anterior pituitary gland. The suppression of Per2-dLuc luminescence by sevoflurane in in vitro SCN cultures isolated from peripheral inputs and other nuclei suggest a direct action of sevoflurane on the SCN itself. That sevoflurane has no such effect on peripheral organs suggests that this action might be mediated through a neuron-specific cellular mechanism or a regulation of the signal transduction between neurons.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(3):e59454. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Renal fibrosis is a common finding in progressive renal diseases. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are involved in epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). We investigated the role of MMP-2 and the effect of inhibition of MMPs on the development of renal fibrosis. Renal fibrosis was induced in MMP-2 wild-type (MMP-2⁺/⁺) mice by unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO). Renal histopathology, EMT-associated molecules, and activity of MMP-2 and MMP-9 were examined during the development of interstitial fibrosis. UUO-renal fibrosis was also induced in MMP-2 deficient (MMP-2⁻/⁻) and MMP-2⁺/⁺ mice treated with minocycline (inhibitor of MMPs). In MMP-2⁺/⁺ mice, MMP-2 and MMP-9 were expressed in damaged tubules, and their activities increased in a time-dependent manner after UUO. Interstitial fibrosis was noted at day 14, with deposition of types III and I collagens and expression of markers of mesenchymal cells (S100A4, vimentin, α-smooth muscle actin, and heat shock protein-47) in damaged tubular epithelial cells, together with F4/80+ macrophage infiltration. Fibrotic kidneys expressed EMT-associated molecules (ILK, TGF-β1, Smad, Wnt, β-catenin, and Snail). In contrast, the kidneys of MMP-2⁻/⁻ mice and minocycline-treated MMP-2⁺/⁺ mice showed amelioration of renal fibrosis with reduced expression of markers of mesenchymal cells in tubular epithelial cells, inhibition of upregulated EMT-associated molecules, and suppression of macrophage infiltration. The results suggested that MMP-2 have a pathogenic role in renal interstitial fibrosis, possibly through the induction of EMT and macrophage infiltration. Inhibition of MMPs may be beneficial therapeutically in renal fibrosis.
    Laboratory Investigation 05/2012; 92(8):1149-60. · 3.96 Impact Factor
  • Toshio Akimoto, Misao Terada, Akira Shimizu
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    ABSTRACT: We established the WBN/Kob-Lepr(fa) rat as a new congenic strain for the fa allele of the leptin receptor gene (Lepr). Homozygous (fa/fa) WBN/Kob-Lepr(fa) rats provide a model of non-insulin-dependent diabetes, although its onset is secondary to pancreatitis. In the present study, we compared histopathological observations of pancreatitis in each genotype of this rat, to examine its suitability as a model of pancreatitis. The histopathological findings of the pancreatitis revealed intense changes dependent on age, such as hemorrhage or hemosiderin deposition. The pancreatitis in homozygous (fa/fa) WBN/Kob-Lepr(fa) rats were more severe than those of WBN/Kob rats.
    Journal of Veterinary Medical Science 08/2011; 74(1):65-70. · 0.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Preventing internal hemorrhage extends the lifespan of rats with chronic bile duct ligation (CBDL), a common animal model of portal hypertension. We investigated hemodynamics during the early and late stages of cirrhosis caused by CBDL. We also evaluated the hemodynamic influence of NO, which is the chief vasodilator in hyperdynamic syndrome, by administration of an NO synthase inhibitor (N(G)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester: L-NAME; 10 mg/kg). ANIMALS/METHODS: In 24 Sprague-Dawley rats (9 sham rats and 15 CBDL rats), hemodynamics were assessed under conscious and unrestrained conditions 4 and 8 weeks after surgery. Before and 30 minutes after L-NAME administration, the cardiac index (CI) and regional blood flow were measured with the reference sample method using (141)Ce- and (113)Sn-microspheres (15 µm in diameter). A hyperdynamic systemic circulation and splanchnic hyperemia were observed after CBDL, and these changes increased with the progression of cirrhosis. L-NAME significantly diminished the hyperdynamic circulation and also reduced splanchnic hyperemia. In 4-week CBDL rats, a low hemoglobin concentration made an important contribution to the hyperdynamic circulation, and the portal collateral system collapsed when inflow to the portal territory was reduced by L-NAME treatment. In 8-week CBDL rats, systemic hemodynamics were closely linked to both the splanchnic circulation and the renal circulation before and after L-NAME administration, apart from hepatic artery blood flow. The distinctive hemodynamic changes of portal hypertension were found in 8-week CBDL rats. Thus, 8-week CBDL rats may be a better animal model of human portal hypertension than 4-week CBDL rats.
    Journal of Nippon Medical School 01/2011; 78(3):146-55.
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    ABSTRACT: Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are endopeptidases that degrade extracellular matrix and involved in ischemic organ injuries. The present study was designed to determine the role of MMP-2 in the development of ischemic acute kidney injury (AKI). AKI was induced in MMP-2 wild-type (MMP-2(+/+)) mice by 30, 60, 90, and 120 min renal ischemia and reperfusion. Renal histology, expression and activity of MMP-2 and MMP-9, and renal function were examined during the development of AKI. AKI was also induced in MMP-2-deficient (MMP-2(-/-)) mice and MMP-2(+/+) mice treated with inhibitor of MMPs (minocycline and synthetic peptide MMP inhibitor). In MMP-2(+/+) mice, MMP-2 and MMP-9 activities increased significantly at 2 to 24 h, peaked at 6 h, after reperfusion. Immunohistochemical analysis identified MMP-2 in the interstitium around tubules and peritubular capillaries in the outer medulla. Acute tubular injury (ATI), including apoptosis and necrosis, was evident in the outer medulla at 24 h, along with renal dysfunction. As ischemia period increases, MMP-2 and MMP-9 activities at 6 h and severity of AKI at 24 h increased depending on the duration of ischemia between 30 and 120 min. However, the kidneys of MMP-2(-/-) mice showed minimal ATI; serum creatinine 24 h after reperfusion was significantly low in these mice. Inhibitors of MMPs reduced ATI and improved renal dysfunction at 24 h. We conclude that MMPs, especially MMP-2 have a pathogenic role in ischemia-reperfusion AKI, and that inhibitors of MMPs can protect against ischemic AKI.
    Laboratory Investigation 10/2010; 91(2):170-80. · 3.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aim: Acute administration of methylene blue (MB) can reverse hypoxemia in patients with hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS). We evaluated the effect of chronic MB administration in common bile duct-ligated rats, which develop HPS by 5 weeks after surgery. Methods: A total of 96 Sprague-Dawley rats were used, including 63 rats with common bile duct ligation (CBDL), 22 sham-operated rats and 11 normal control rats. MB (6 mg/kg) was injected s.c. once a day for 4 weeks. Evaluation of hemodynamics and intrapulmonary vascular dilatation (IPVD), as well as blood sampling for arterial blood gas analysis, were done under conscious and unrestrained conditions. Hemodynamics were assessed by the reference sample method using (141)Ce-microspheres (15 microm in diameter), and IPVD was also determined by i.v. injection of these microspheres. Histological examination of the lungs was done with hematoxylin-eosin staining and immunohistochemical staining for von Willebrand factor or vascular endothelial growth factor. Results: Both the arterial oxygen tension and alveolar-arterial oxygen difference were significantly improved in MB-treated CBDL rats. The hyperdynamic circulation and splanchnic hyperemia seen in untreated CBDL rats were also alleviated by MB treatment. However, IPVD was not affected by MB. Histological examination of the lungs indicated that MB treatment reduced the proliferation of alveolar capillary vessels and angiogenesis, leading to improvement of arterial dysoxygenation. Hepatic synthetic and detoxification functions, as well as renal function, were not altered by MB treatment. Conclusion: Methylene blue may be a candidate treatment for HPS that does not cause deterioration of hepatic or renal function.
    Hepatology Research 04/2010; 40(6):622-32. · 2.07 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Original WBN/Kob male rats commonly develop chronic pancreatitis by the age of 3 months, while diabetes mellitus occurs at 9 months. In contrast, female rats of this strain do not show pancreatitis or diabetes. The WBN/Kob-fatty rat is a homozygous (fa/fa) congenic strain for the fa allele of the leptin receptor gene (Lepr). In WBN/Kob-fatty rats, both females and males provide a model of non-insulin-dependent diabetes with obesity. The leptin receptor fatty gene (Lepr(fa)) induces obesity and hyperphagia. In the present study, we examined the effect of dietary restriction on pancreatitis and diabetes in female WBN/Kob-fatty rats. Five female fatty rats comprised a restricted feeding group with paired-feeding from 3 to 13 weeks of age, and five female lean rats comprised a control group with paired-feeding. At 13 weeks of age, two of the five female fatty rats of the control group developed diabetes mellitus, while no female fatty rats of the restricted feeding group developed diabetes mellitus. At this stage, pathological changes of the pancreas were observed in female fatty rats. All female fatty rats showed severe interlobular, intra-lobular and intra-islet fibrosis. In female fatty rats of the restricted feeding group, pathological changes of the pancreas were milder those of the free-feeding fatty group. Although dietary restriction could not completely prevent pancreatitis in female fatty rats, the development of diabetes was inhibited by its reduction of the severity of pancreatitis.
    Experimental Animals 01/2010; 59(5):623-30. · 1.46 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The WBN/Kob-Lepr(fa) rat is a new congenic strain for the fa allele of the leptin receptor gene (Lepr). Homozygous (fa/fa) WBN/Kob-Lepr(fa) rats provide a model of non-insulin-dependent diabetes with obesity. Here, we describe the characteristics of this new animal model in detail. At 7 weeks of age, both male and female obese WBN/Kob rats showed inflammatory cell infiltration of the pancreas that suggested pan-pancreatitis and an abnormal OGTT. At 3 months of age, both male and female obese WBN/Kob rats developed overt diabetes mellitus associated with severe chronic pancreatitis. In contrast, lean female WBN/Kob rats do not develop pancreatitis or diabetes. In WBN/Kob rats, this mutation might promote the onset of severe pancreatitis, leading to the rapid development of diabetes mellitus.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 03/2008; 366(2):556-62. · 2.41 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Hepatology - J HEPATOL. 01/2007; 46.
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    ABSTRACT: Rats with chronic bile duct ligation (CBDL) and portal vein ligation (PVL) are used as models of portal hypertension. CBDL rats show hypoxemia with intrapulmonary vasodilatation (IPVD), and are recognized as a model of hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS), while PVL rats are normoxemic. We investigated the differences in arterial oxygenation between these models, and the key factors leading to HPS. Forty-eight Sprague-Dawley rats were prepared as CBDL or PVL models, or as Sham rats. Arterial oxygenation, hemodynamics (reference sample method), and IPVD were simultaneously evaluated in conscious and unrestrained animals, using (141)Ce- or (113)Sn-labeled microspheres (15 microm in diameter), respectively. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) and nitrate/nitrite (end products of nitric oxide; NOx) production by the lung tissue (increment across the lungs) was also determined. The extent of IPVD was similar in both models, but hypoxemia was only observed in CBDL rats. The ET-1 level and the increment in NOx were significantly increased in CBDL rats, and the increment was directly correlated with impairment of oxygenation. Blood flow through the bronchial arteries (anatomical shunting) was increased in CBDL rats, reaching more than three times the level in PVL rats or Sham rats. These results support the hypothesis that NO derived from the lung tissues contributes to hypoxemia, and IPVD appears to be a prerequisite for impaired oxygenation. The considerable increase of anatomical shunting may potentially contribute to impaired oxygenation in CBDL rats.
    Journal of Gastroenterology 09/2005; 40(8):811-9. · 3.79 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to compare the hemodynamic features of portal hypertension in rats with early cirrhosis with those of rats with advanced cirrhosis following common bile duct ligation (CBDL). A total of 53 male Sprague-Dawley rats were used. Hemodynamics were evaluated under conscious and unrestrained conditions 4 weeks and 8 weeks after CBDL, and 4 weeks after a sham operation. Arterial pressure and portal pressure were measured directly via catheters placed in the right femoral artery and main portal vein, respectively. The cardiac index and organ (splanchninc organs, brain, kidneys and lungs) blood flow were determined by the reference sample method using (141)Ce-labeled microspheres (15 mum in diameter). Arterial levels of endothelin-1 and nitrate/nitrite, as well as liver function variables, were also determined. Portal pressure was significantly higher 8 weeks after CBDL (15.8+/-2.1, n=8) than 4 weeks after CBDL (13.9+/-2.1 mmHg, n=12, p<0.05), and the hyperdynamic circulation of the early period was attenuated (p<0.05). Although hepatic artery blood flow 4 and 8 weeks after CBDL was higher than that after sham operation (p<0.05), portal territory blood flow was not increased. There was a significant positive correlation between portal pressure and portal territory blood flow 8 weeks after CBDL (r=0.822, n=8, p=0.012). In rats with anemia 4 weeks after CBDL, the hemoglobin concentration was negatively correlated with portal territory blood flow (r=-0.597, n=12, p=0.040). Portal pressure was higher 8 weeks after CBDL than 4 weeks after CBDL and increased with portal territory blood flow, suggesting that portal hypertension is maintained by a mechanism consistent with the forward flow theory. Anemia might exacerbate the hyperdynamic systemic circulation 4 weeks after CBDL.
    Journal of Nippon Medical School 08/2005; 72(4):217-25.
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    ABSTRACT: The common bile duct-ligated (CBDL) rat, which is widely used as a model of human cirrhosis, rapidly develops secondary biliary cirrhosis (SBC) within 4 weeks. The CBDL rat shows poor viability, however, a detailed examination of the causes of its death has not been made. In this study, we investigated the outcome of bile duct ligation in detail and attempted to extend the life span of this model by feeding the animals a diet supplemented with nutrients. Survival rate, blood chemistry, blood cell counts, plasma levels of K vitamins and liver histology were compared among CBDL rats fed a standard diet and an enriched diet. Sham-operated rats were used as a control. Six out of 18 CBDL rats fed the standard diet died within 32 days of operation. The cause of death was massive internal hemorrhage in various organs or body cavities. All CBDL rats fed the enriched diet survived more than 31 days, but the viability of CBDL rats was not significant between those fed the standard diet and the enriched diet. The degree of anemia correlated significantly with the prolongation of prothrombin time. Plasma vitamin K1 levels in CBDL rats were significantly lower than those in sham-operated rats, but vitamin K2 levels were similar. We suggest that massive hemorrhage, which was the direct cause of death, is caused by the impairment of hemostasis resulting from vitamin K deficiency. The enriched diet with vitamin K nutritional supplements seemed to contribute to the prolongation of the life span of CBDL rats.
    Experimental Animals 05/2005; 54(2):155-61. · 1.46 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Hepatology - J HEPATOL. 01/2004; 40:65-66.
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    ABSTRACT: Nitric oxide (NO) has been suggested as the major cause of pulmonary vascular dilatation and hypoxemia in hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS). The aim of this study was to assess the effect of NO on arterial oxygenation in rats with common bile duct ligation (CBDL rats), a model of HPS. Arterial blood gases were measured in 44 CBDL rats and 44 Sham rats under unrestrained conditions. Intrapulmonary shunting was assessed with (141)Ce-labeled microspheres (15-mum diameter) and serum nitrate/nitrite levels were measured by HPLC. The effect of NOS inhibition on A-aDO(2) was studied using L-NAME. A decrease of PaO(2) below 82.7 mmHg (the mean value-2sigma in Sham rats) was seen in 43% of CBDL rats. Intrapulmonary shunting was greater in CBDL rats than in Sham rats (P<0.001). A correlation between the extent of shunting and A-aDO(2) was found in all animals studied (r=0.89, P<0.001, n=16). Serum levels of nitrate/nitrite increased significantly across the lungs, and the increase was significantly correlated with A-aDO(2) in the total population of animals studied. Administration of L-NAME to CBDL rats achieved a significant improvement of A-aDO(2). These results suggest that pulmonary vascular dilatation due to NO leads to hypoxemia in CBDL rats.
    Journal of Hepatology 11/2003; 39(5):724-30. · 9.86 Impact Factor