Gifu, Japan


Research Interests

Department of Pharmacology was established on September 15, 1964 by Professor Akihide Koda,who was succeeded by Professor Hiroichi Nagai from 1993, followed by the current members from2005. In 2007, the department name became known as Laboratory of Pharmacology, Department of Bioactive Molecules. We have focused our research projects on allergy since the establishment of our department in 1964. Our research has contributed to the establishment of a new research area called ”immunopharmacology” and 2 anti-allergic drugs, tranilast and suplatast tosilate have been developed.

Our current research projects are 1) establishment of animal models for allergic diseases,2) examining developing mechanisms of allergic diseases using established animal models, 3) searching new compounds and methods useful for the treatment of allergic diseases using the animal models, and 4) examining cellular and molecular mechanisms using cells involved in the development of allergy. Our target diseases are allergic dermatitis such as atopic dermatitis and contact dermatitis, airway allergic inflammation such as asthma and rhinitis, food allergy, and so on.

Research Objectives
  1. Characterization of itching associated with atopic dermatitis and search for anti-itch compounds
  2. Studies on the development and pathology of intractable asthma, and search for the treatment targets
  3. Development and characterization of food allergy models and search for the treatment targets
  4. Evaluation of novel mite-antigen causing allergies
Research Results
  1. Sakota Y., Ozawa Y., Yamashita H., Tanaka H., Inagaki N., Collagen gel contraction assay using human bronchial smooth muscle cells and its application for evaluation of inhibitory effect of formoterol, Biol. Pharm. Bull., 37, 1014-1020 (2014).
  2. Yamashita H., Takahashi K., Tanaka H., Nagai H., Inagaki N., Overcoming food allergy through acquired tolerance conferred by transfer of Tregs in a murine models, Allergy, 67, 201-209 (2012).
  3. Masuoka M., Shiraishi H., Ohta S., Suzuki S., Arima K., Toda S., Inagaki N., Kurihara Y., Hayashida S., Takeuchi S., Koike K., Ono J., Noshiro H., Furue M., Conway S. J., Narisawa Y., Izuhara K., Periostin promotes chronic allergic inflammation in response to Th2 cytokines, J. Clin. Invest., 122, 2590-2600 (2012).
  4. Balaha M.F., Tanaka H., Yamashita H., Abdel Rahman M.N., Inagaki N., Oral Nigella sativa oil ameliorates ovalbumin-induced bronchial asthma in mice, Int. Immunopharmacol., 14, 224-231 (2012).
  5. Usuda H., Endo T., Shimouchi A., Saito A., Tominaga M., Yamashita H., Nagai H., Inagaki N., Tanaka H., Transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 – a polymodal nociceptive receptor – plays a crucial role in formaldehyde-induced skin inflammation in mice, J. Pharmacol. Sci., 118, 266-274 (2012).
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