Department of Physiology

Analyzing functions of molecules that control calcium
signaling in cardiac myocytes using a confocal laser scanning
The prognoses of patients with heart diseases, such as heart failure and arrhythmia, tend to be poor. Therefore pathophysiological mechanisms and therapeutic strategies for heart diseases have been intensively studied. The heart consists of cardiac myocytes. Calcium ion (Ca2+) in cardiac myocytes plays an essential role in the regulation of cardiac function. Cardiac myocytes continue to beat by maneuvering the intracellular Ca2+. On the other hand, Ca2+ is extremely toxic to cardiac myocytes, when they lose control of it.

The dysregulation of Ca2+ causes serious problems such as arrhythmia and heart failure due to ectopic excitation and contractile dysfunction, respectively. By elucidating the mechanism for fine-tuning of Ca2+ and its failure in cardiac myocytes, our laboratory is opening up novel therapeutic strategies against heart diseases.

Professor Satomi Adachi-Akahane

Associate Professor Satomi Adachi-Akahane
Graduated from Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Tokyo, in 1985. Became assistant in Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Tokyo, in 1987, and awarded doctorate in pharmaceutical sciences in 1992. Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Pharmacology & Physiology, Georgetown University, 1993. Returned to Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Tokyo, in 1995. Appointed associate professor, Faculty of Medicine, Toho University, in 2005,and Professor in 2013.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Microfertilization using a manipulator to inject a sperm in an egg cell
Microfertilization using a manipulator to inject a sperm in an
egg cell
While fertility treatment, such as in vitro fertilization, has made dramatic progress and is widely applied, it has been reported that the rates of disorders caused by epigenetics— that is, heritable changes in gene expression without abnormality in DNA or gene sequence—are high in children conceived by assisted reproductive technology (ART). We are elucidating the relation between epigenetics and fertility treatment with the aim of offering safer reproductive medicine, considering the long-term health of children.

We analyze samples obtained without imposing a burden on patients or employing invasive procedures, such as samples taken from the placenta of women who gave birth as a result of fertility treatment or using culture media for fertilized eggs to study in vitro fertilization in comparison to spontaneous pregnancy. Our objective is the clarification of specific mechanisms that illuminate how and at what stage the health of children conceived by ART is affected.

Professor Yukiko Katagiri

Associate Professor Yukiko Katagiri
Completed doctoral program at the Graduate School of Medicine, Toho University. After working as an assistant at the Faculty of Medicine, Toho University, did research at the Center for Reproductive Medicine and Infertility, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, from 2001 to 2005, under Dr. Palermo who developed intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), a widely applied in vitro fertilization treatment. Appointed lecturer, Faculty of Medicine, Toho University, in 2007; head, Female Doctor Support Office, Toho University, in 2009; associate professor, Faculty of Medicine, Toho University in 2010. Deputy Director, Toho University Omori Medical Center Reproduction Center and head, Clinical Genetics Department.