Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology

【Research Keyword】
Autophagy, GABAA receptor signaling, insulin secretion, obesity (lipogenesis, lipolysis, and thermogenesis), pain relief, protection from bacterial infection

Pharmacology is the study of how drugs affect living organisms. Dental students study the interactions between living organisms and drugs to learn the necessary medicine for dental care, basic drug education for general disease and treatment, and medical therapy useful in clinical cases.

We study the molecular mechanisms used in inhibitory neurotransmission with a new signaling molecule, PLC-related catalytically inactive protein (PRIP). We develop new drugs targeting PRIP.
Our recent research projects concern:

  1. The PRIP regulatory mechanisms for food intake and obesity.
  2. The molecular mechanisms of thermogenesis in brown adipocytes.
  3. Abnormal insulin secretion found in PRIP gene knockout mice.
  4. PRIP-regulated autophagy for protection from bacterial infection.
  5. Pain control via PRIP and the molecular basis for the appearance of neuropathic pain.
  6. The mechanisms of cell migration regulated by PRIP.
  7. The relationship between the immune system and depression-like behavior.

【Photo explanation】Picture of confocal laser microscope
Fig. 1. Cultured neuron stained with inhibitory neurotransmitter (GABA) receptor-antibody and PRIP-antibody
Fig. 2. Visualization of GFP-Akt-PH and RFP-actin in the mouse embryonic fibroblast of Prip--KO mice