Publications by authors named "Naoya Kato"

194 Publications

Analysis of circulating cell-free DNA after endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.

Pancreatology 2021 Apr 15. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Background/objectives: Recently, increase in cell-free DNA (cfDNA) concentration or newly detected KRAS mutation after endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration (EUS-FNA) biopsy were reported to be related to the occurrence of new distant metastasis. In this study, we investigated whether cfDNA concentration increased with the release of tumor components into the blood after EUS-FNA and whether its increase was related to prognosis.

Methods: Sixty-eight patients underwent EUS-FNA and were pathologically confirmed as having pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). We measured plasma cfDNA concentration and the copy number of KRAS mutation in 68 patients and circulating tumor cells in 8 before and after EUS-FNA.

Results: The average cfDNA concentration after EUS-FNA (672.5 ± 919.6 ng/mL) was significantly higher than that before EUS-FNA (527.7 ± 827.3 ng/mL) (P < 0.001). KRAS mutation in plasma was detected in 8 patients (11.8%), however a significant increase in cfDNA concentration after EUS-FNA was not related to the change in KRAS-mutant copy number. Minimal increase in circulating tumor cells was observed in 3 of 8 patients. New distant metastasis was observed within 286 days to initial metastasis detection in 6 of 12 patients with ≥2-fold increase in cfDNA concentration and 26 of 56 patients with <2-fold increase within 185 days. In 32 patients who underwent surgery, ≥2-fold increase in cfDNA did not affect early recurrence.

Conclusions: The increase in cfDNA concentration after EUS-FNA was not caused by tumor cell components released into blood vessels. Hence, the risk of seeding via the blood stream after EUS-FNA may need not be considered.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pan.2021.04.001DOI Listing
April 2021

Analysis of the safety of pretransplant corticosteroid therapy in patients with acute liver failure and late-onset hepatic failure in Japan.

JGH Open 2021 Apr 5;5(4):428-433. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Yamaguchi University Graduate School of Medicine Ube Japan.

Background And Aim: In Japan, corticosteroids have been commonly used as a part of multidisciplinary therapy for patients with acute liver failure and late-onset hepatic failure. However, there is controversy regarding the development of infections and other complications. In this study, the influence of corticosteroids on patient outcomes after liver transplantation was investigated.

Methods: This study included 167 patients with acute liver failure and late-onset hepatic failure who underwent liver transplantation between 2010 and 2015. The effects of pretransplant corticosteroid therapy on patient outcomes were evaluated using a database constructed by the subcommittee for fulminant hepatitis in the Intractable Hepato-Biliary Diseases Study Group of Japan.

Results: The subacute type and the median total bilirubin levels were higher in those receiving corticosteroids than in those not receiving corticosteroids. Although infections tended to be higher in patients receiving corticosteroids, pretransplant corticosteroid administration did not affect the survival rates. The duration from corticosteroid initiation to liver transplantation was longer in patients who developed infections. The survival rates, however, did not differ between patients with and without infections.

Conclusions: Corticosteroids were administered to patients with poor prognoses. Otherwise, the overall outcome in those administered corticosteroids was not significantly different from that in those administered without corticosteroids. Although infectious complications tended to occur, they were generally controllable and nonfatal. Pretransplant corticosteroid therapy may be permissible, with regarding for infections and performed within the minimum duration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jgh3.12508DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8035437PMC
April 2021

Serum Angiopoietin 2 acts as a diagnostic and prognostic biomarker in hepatocellular carcinoma.

J Cancer 2021 5;12(9):2694-2701. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba 260-8670, Japan.

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is typically accompanied by abundant arterial blood flow. Although angiogenic growth factors such as Angiopoietin 2 (Ang2) play a central role in tumor angiogenesis in HCC, the role of serum Ang2 as a biomarker in HCC remains unclear. In this study, we aimed to investigate the potential of Ang2 as a diagnostic and prognostic biomarker in HCC using a sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The median Ang2 levels in controls (n=20), chronic liver disease patients (n=98), and HCC patients (n=275) were 1.58, 2.33, and 3.53 ng/mL, respectively. The optimal cut-off value of Ang2 was determined as 3.5 ng/mL by receiver operating curve analysis. The sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of Ang2 for HCC detection were 50.9, 83.7, and 59.5%, respectively. Spearman's rank correlation coefficient analysis demonstrated only a weak correlation between Ang2 serum levels and alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) or des-gamma-carboxy prothrombin (DCP) serum levels. The diagnostic value of Ang2 was comparable to those of other existing markers. In addition, 24 out of 73 patients with normal AFP and DCP levels (32.9%) demonstrated abnormally high Ang2 levels (≥3.5 ng/mL). Although no significant difference in overall survival was found between Ang2 and Ang2 patients with curative ablation therapy, recurrence-free survival (RFS) in Ang2 patients was observed to be significantly shorter than those in Ang2 patients. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that high serum Ang2 levels (≥3.5 ng/mL) and the presence of multiple tumors were poor prognostic factors. In conclusion, our findings indicate that serum Ang2 is a potential novel biomarker for both diagnosis and prognosis in HCC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7150/jca.56436DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8040723PMC
March 2021

Transmission of Helicobacter pylori between a human and two dogs: A case report.

Helicobacter 2021 Apr 5:e12798. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Department of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.

Background: Whereas non-Helicobacter pylori helicobacters, which are frequently detected in the stomachs of dogs and cats as a source of zoonoses, have attracted considerable attention, the role of pets in H. pylori epidemiology is unclear. In our previous study, an H. pylori infection was detected in the stomach of a dog (Dog 1). Here, we investigated the H. pylori infection status in the female offspring of Dog 1 (Dog 2) and its owner within the same household.

Materials And Methods: Biopsy specimens were obtained from the dog's owner and tested for H. pylori. DNA from gastric biopsy samples of Dog 1, gastric fluid sediment of Dog 2, and bacteria from the stomach of the owner was obtained, and Helicobacter genus- and species-specific PCRs were performed. Then, sequence analyses of the partial region of the ureAB gene were conducted.

Results: Samples from both dogs and the owner reacted positively in the genus-specific PCR and negative in the Helicobacter felis-, Helicobacter bizzozeronii-, and Helicobacter heilmannii sensu stricto-specific PCRs. All three samples also reacted positively in the H. pylori-specific PCR. Sequences of the partial ureAB gene from all subjects were identical.

Conclusions: The results suggested that the two dogs and their owner were infected with an identical H. pylori strain. This report is the first to demonstrate that H. pylori can be transmitted between humans and dogs. Further studies are required to investigate the risk factors for the transmission of H. pylori between humans and dogs from the perspective of preventive epidemiology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hel.12798DOI Listing
April 2021

Percutaneous Two-Dimensional Shear Wave Elastography for Diagnosis of Pancreatic Tumor.

Diagnostics (Basel) 2021 Mar 11;11(3). Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Gastroenterology, Chiba University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-8-1 Inohan, Chuo-ku Chiba City 260-8670, Japan.

Background: To investigate the efficacy of two-dimensional shear wave elastography (2D-SWE) for the diagnosis of pancreatic mass lesions.

Methods: This ethics committee-approved cross-sectional study included 52 patients with histologically-proven pancreatic tumors (pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), 36; tumor-forming pancreatitis (TFP), 15; neuroendocrine tumor, 1) and 33 control subjects. The 2D-SWE was performed for the tumor/non-tumor tissues, and SWE-mapping patterns and propagation quality were assessed.

Results: Three mapping patterns were detected based on the size and distribution of the coloring areas. Pattern A (whole coloring) was detected in all non-tumor tissues and TFP, whereas pattern C (multiple small coloring spots) was detected in PDAC only. Pattern B (partial coloring with smaller spots) was detected in other lesions. The specificity and positive predictive value of pattern A for non-PDAC and those of pattern C for PDAC were 100%. The SWE value was higher in tumor lesions than in the non-tumor tissues (38.1 vs. 9.8 kPa; < 0.001) in patients with PDAC. The SWE value in the non-tumor lesion was higher in patients with PDAC than in control (9.8 vs. 7.5 kPa; < 0.001).

Conclusions: 2D-SWE may play a role as a novel diagnostic tool for PDAC to detect a specific mapping pattern with quantitative assessment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics11030498DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8001884PMC
March 2021

Efficacy of Texture and Color Enhancement Imaging in visualizing gastric mucosal atrophy and gastric neoplasms.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 25;11(1):6910. Epub 2021 Mar 25.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Inohana 1-8-1, Chiba-City, 260-8670, Japan.

In 2020, Olympus Medical Systems Corporation introduced the Texture and Color Enhancement Imaging (TXI) as a new image-enhanced endoscopy. This study aimed to evaluate the visibility of neoplasms and mucosal atrophy in the upper gastrointestinal tract through TXI. We evaluated 72 and 60 images of 12 gastric neoplasms and 20 gastric atrophic/nonatrophic mucosa, respectively. The visibility of gastric mucosal atrophy and gastric neoplasm was assessed by six endoscopists using a previously reported visibility scale (1 = poor to 4 = excellent). Color differences between gastric mucosal atrophy and nonatrophic mucosa and between gastric neoplasm and adjacent areas were assessed using the International Commission on Illumination L*a*b* color space system. The visibility of mucosal atrophy and gastric neoplasm was significantly improved in TXI mode 1 compared with that in white-light imaging (WLI) (visibility score: 3.8 ± 0.5 vs. 2.8 ± 0.9, p < 0.01 for mucosal atrophy; visibility score: 2.8 ± 1.0 vs. 2.0 ± 0.9, p < 0.01 for gastric neoplasm). Regarding gastric atrophic and nonatrophic mucosae, TXI mode 1 had a significantly greater color difference than WLI (color differences: 14.2 ± 8.0 vs. 8.7 ± 4.2, respectively, p < 0.01). TXI may be a useful observation modality in the endoscopic screening of the upper gastrointestinal tract.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-86296-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7994634PMC
March 2021

Acquisition of mesenchymal-like phenotypes and overproduction of angiogenic factors in lenvatinib-resistant hepatocellular carcinoma cells.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2021 Apr 3;549:171-178. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Lenvatinib is one of the first-line drugs for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and widely used around the world. However, the mechanisms underlying resistance to lenvatinib remain unclear. In this study, we conducted characteristic analyses of lenvatinib-resistant HCC cells. Lenvatinib-resistant HCC cell lines were established by exposure to serially escalated doses of lenvatinib over 2 months. The biological characteristics of these cells were examined by in vitro assays. To investigate the cytokine profile of lenvatinib-resistant HCC cells, the supernatant derived from lenvatinib-resistant Huh7 cells was subjected to nitrocellulose membrane-based sandwich immunoassay. Both activation of the MAPK/MEK/ERK signaling pathway and upregulation of epithelial mesenchymal transition markers were observed in lenvatinib-resistant cells. Concordant with these findings, proliferation and invasion abilities were enhanced in these cells compared with control cells. Screening of a cytokine array spotted with 105 different antibodies to human cytokines enabled us to identify 16 upregulated cytokines in lenvatinib-resistant cells. Among them, 3 angiogenic cytokines: vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), platelet-derived growth factor-AA (PDGF-AA), and angiogenin, were increased significantly. Conditioned medium from lenvatinib-resistant cells accelerated tube formation of human umbilical vein cells. In conclusion, lenvatinib-resistant HCC cells were characterized by enhanced proliferation and invasion abilities. These findings might contribute to the establishment of new combination therapies with lenvatinib.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2021.02.097DOI Listing
April 2021

The impact of FGF19/FGFR4 signaling inhibition in antitumor activity of multi-kinase inhibitors in hepatocellular carcinoma.

Sci Rep 2021 Mar 5;11(1):5303. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chuo-ku, Chiba, 260-8670, Japan.

FGF19/FGFR4 autocrine signaling is one of the main targets for multi-kinase inhibitors (MKIs). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying FGF19/FGFR4 signaling in the antitumor effects to MKIs in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) remain unclear. In this study, the impact of FGFR4/ERK signaling inhibition on HCC following MKI treatment was analyzed in vitro and in vivo assays. Serum FGF19 in HCC patients treated using MKIs, such as sorafenib (n = 173) and lenvatinib (n = 40), was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Lenvatinib strongly inhibited the phosphorylation of FRS2 and ERK, the downstream signaling molecules of FGFR4, compared with sorafenib and regorafenib. Additional use of a selective FGFR4 inhibitor with sorafenib further suppressed FGFR4/ERK signaling and synergistically inhibited HCC cell growth in culture and xenograft subcutaneous tumors. Although serum FGF19 (n = 68) patients treated using sorafenib exhibited a significantly shorter progression-free survival and overall survival than FGF19 (n = 105) patients, there were no significant differences between FGF19 (n = 21) and FGF19 (n = 19) patients treated using lenvatinib. In conclusion, robust inhibition of FGF19/FGFR4 is of importance for the exertion of antitumor effects of MKIs. Serum FGF19 levels may function as a predictive marker for drug response and survival in HCC patients treated using sorafenib.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-84117-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7935880PMC
March 2021

Myosin Light Chain 9/12 Regulates the Pathogenesis of Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

Front Immunol 2020 29;11:594297. Epub 2021 Jan 29.

Department of Immunology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

The numbers of patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD), have been increasing over time, worldwide; however, the pathogenesis of IBD is multifactorial and has not been fully understood. Myosin light chain 9 and 12a and 12b (Myl9/12) are known as ligands of the CD69 molecule. They create "Myl9 nets" that are often detected in inflamed site, which play a crucial role in regulating the recruitment and retention of CD69-expressing effector cells in inflamed tissues. We demonstrated the strong expression of Myl9/12 in the inflamed gut of IBD patients and mice with DSS-induced colitis. The administration of anti-Myl9/12 Ab to mice with DSS-induced colitis ameliorated the inflammation and prolonged their survival. The plasma Myl9 levels in the patients with active UC and CD were significantly higher than those in patients with disease remission, and may depict the disease severity of IBD patients, especially those with UC. Thus, our results indicate that Myl9/12 are involved in the pathogenesis of IBD, and are likely to be a new therapeutic target for patients suffering from IBD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2020.594297DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7878395PMC
January 2021

Propofol midazolam for sedation during radiofrequency ablation in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.

JGH Open 2021 Feb 22;5(2):273-279. Epub 2020 Dec 22.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine Chiba University Chiba Japan.

Background And Aim: Standardization of the sedation protocol during radiofrequency ablation (RFA) in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is needed. This randomized, single-blind, investigator-initiated trial compared clinical outcomes during and after RFA using propofol and midazolam, respectively, in patients with HCC.

Methods: Few- and small-nodule HCC patients (≤3 nodules and ≤3 cm) were randomly assigned to either propofol or midazolam. Patient satisfaction was assessed using a 100-mm visual analog scale (VAS) (1 mm = not at all satisfied, 100 mm = completely satisfied). Sedation recovery rates 1, 2, 3, and 4 h after RFA were evaluated based on Modified Observer's Assessment of Alertness/Sedation (MOAA/S) scores; full recovery was defined as a MOAA/S score of 5.

Results: Between July 2013 and September 2017, 143 patients with HCC were enrolled, and 135 patients were randomly assigned to the treatment group. Compared with midazolam, propofol exhibited similar median procedural satisfaction (propofol: 73.1 mm, midazolam: 76.9 mm, = 0.574). Recovery rates 1 and 2 h after RFA were higher in the propofol group than in the midazolam group. Meanwhile, recovery rates observed 3 and 4 h after RFA were similar in the two groups. The safety profiles during and after RFA were almost identical in the two groups.

Conclusion: Patient satisfaction was almost identical in patients receiving propofol and midazolam sedation during RFA. Propofol sedation resulted in reduced recovery time compared with midazolam sedation in patients with HCC. The safety profiles of both propofol and midazolam sedation during and after RFA were acceptable.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jgh3.12483DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7857294PMC
February 2021

Cabozantinib in Japanese patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma: a phase 2 multicenter study.

J Gastroenterol 2021 Feb 3;56(2):181-190. Epub 2021 Jan 3.

Oncology Clinical Research Department, Oncology Therapeutic Area Unit for Japan and Asia, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited, Osaka, Japan.

Background: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of cabozantinib in Japanese patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) who had progressed following one or two lines of systemic therapy including sorafenib. An exploratory evaluation in sorafenib-naïve patients was performed.

Methods: In this open-label, single-arm, phase 2 trial, patients received oral cabozantinib 60 mg once daily. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS) rate at Week 24. Secondary endpoints included PFS, overall survival (OS), objective response rate (ORR, best response of complete/partial response), disease control rate (DCR, objective response or stable disease) and safety.

Results: Thirty-four patients received cabozantinib across 17 centers (prior sorafenib cohort, n = 20; sorafenib-naïve cohort, n = 14). PFS rate at 24 weeks was 59.8% [90% confidence interval (CI) 36.1-77.2%] in the prior sorafenib cohort, 16.7% (90% CI 4.0-36.8%) in the sorafenib-naïve cohort and 40.1% (90% CI 24.8-55.0%) overall. Median PFS was 7.4 months for the prior sorafenib cohort, 3.6 months for the sorafenib-naïve cohort, and 5.6 months overall. OS rate at 6 months was 100.0%, 78.6% and 91.1%, respectively; DCR was 85.0%, 64.3% and 76.5%, respectively. The ORR was 0.0% for both cohorts. All patients required dose modifications due to adverse events, the most common of these were palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia syndrome and diarrhea. Three patients (8.8%) discontinued due to adverse events other than disease progression.

Conclusions: Cabozantinib 60 mg/day has a favorable benefit/risk profile for Japanese patients with advanced HCC who have previously received one or two lines of systemic anticancer therapy including sorafenib. (Clinical trial registration: NCT03586973).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00535-020-01753-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7862203PMC
February 2021

Colonoscopic evaluation of diarrhea/colitis occurring as an immune-related adverse event.

Jpn J Clin Oncol 2021 Mar;51(3):363-370

Department of Medical Oncology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Objective: Diarrhea is often observed as an immune-related adverse event. In this study, we conducted a retrospective review of the severity of diarrhea, its treatment and the endoscopic findings in patients developing diarrhea as an immune-related adverse event.

Methods: From August 2015 to June 2019, a total of 369 patients received treatment with immune checkpoint inhibitors at our hospital. For this study, development of grade 2 or more diarrhea in these patients was defined as an immune-related adverse event. We analyzed the histopathological severity of the bowel lesions according to the Nancy histological index for ulcerative colitis.

Results: Of the 369 patients, 27 (7.3%) developed diarrhea as an immune-related adverse event. Of these 27 patients, 18 received steroid treatment. Colonoscopy was performed in 17 patients and culture of the feces in 18. The tests revealed evidence of bacterial colitis (Aeromonas hydrophila) in two patients. The Nancy histological index was 4, 3, 2, 1 and 0 in two, three, two, two and seven patients, respectively. No findings on colonoscopy were observed in 7 of the 17 patients (41%) who underwent colonoscopy, and most of these patients recovered without steroid treatment. Patients with lower values of the Nancy histological index tended to show better responses to steroid treatment.

Conclusions: To avoid unnecessary steroid administration, colonoscopic evaluation is essential in patients receiving treatment with immune checkpoint inhibitors who present with diarrhea as an immune-related adverse event. In addition, the endoscopic findings could be useful to predict the response to steroid treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jjco/hyaa203DOI Listing
March 2021

Linked color imaging can improve the visibility of superficial non-ampullary duodenal epithelial tumors.

Sci Rep 2020 11 26;10(1):20667. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Inohana 1-8-1, Chiba City, 260-8670, Japan.

The current study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of linked color imaging (LCI) in improving the visibility of superficial non-ampullary duodenal epithelial tumors (SNADETs). We prospectively evaluated 44 consecutive patients diagnosed with SNADETs. Three trainees and three experts assessed the visibility scores of white light imaging (WLI), LCI, and blue laser imaging-bright (BLI-b) for SNADETs, which ranged from 1 (not detectable without repeated cautious examination) to 4 (excellent visibility). In addition, the L* a* b* color values and color differences (ΔE*) were evaluated using the CIELAB color space system. For SNADETs, the visibility scores of LCI (3.53 ± 0.59) were significantly higher than those of WLI and BLI-b (2.66 ± 0.79 and 3.41 ± 0.64, respectively). The color differences (ΔE*) between SNADETs and the adjacent normal duodenal mucosa in LCI mode (19.09 ± 8.33) were significantly higher than those in WLI and BLI-b modes (8.67 ± 4.81 and 12.92 ± 7.95, respectively). In addition, the visibility score of SNADETs and the color differences in LCI mode were significantly higher than those in WLI and BLI-b modes regardless of the presence of milk white mucosa (MWM). LCI has potential benefits, and it is considered a promising clinical modality that can increase the visibility of SNADETs regardless of the presence of MWM.This study was registered at the University Hospital Medical Information Network (UMIN000028840).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-77726-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7691495PMC
November 2020

Predictive model of bleeding following endoscopic sphincterotomy for the treatment of choledocholithiasis in hemodialysis patients: A retrospective multicenter study.

JGH Open 2020 Oct 17;4(5):915-922. Epub 2020 May 17.

Department of Gastroenterology Kameda Medical Center Chiba Japan.

Background And Aim: Although hemodialysis (HD) is a strong risk factor for postendoscopic sphincterotomy (ES) bleeding, additional risk factors in HD patients remain unclear. There is no model for predicting post-ES bleeding risk in HD patients. Therefore, we conducted a retrospective multicenter study to reveal these risk factors and develop a predictive model of post-ES bleeding in HD patients.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of HD patients who underwent ES at eight hospitals between January 2006 and December 2016, with post-ES bleeding as the main outcome measure. Univariate analyses were performed to extract possible risk factors for post-ES bleeding. Factors that were clinically important and statistically significant in our univariate analyses were then included in our logistic regression analysis for the development of a multivariate predictive model of post-ES bleeding. This predictive model was visualized using a predictive nomogram.

Results: Post-ES bleeding occurred in 20 (16.3%) of 123 HD patients. Based on clinically important factors and the results of our univariate analyses, platelet count, prothrombin time (international normalized ratio), and HD duration were included in our predictive model of post-ES bleeding. Receiver operating characteristic analysis found that this model had an area under the curve of 0.715 (95% confidence interval, 0.609-0.822). We developed a predictive nomogram based on these results.

Conclusions: We demonstrated that post-ES bleeding is more common in HD patients than in the general population and succeeded in constructing a predictive model that can effectively identify HD patients at risk of post-ES bleeding.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jgh3.12363DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7578281PMC
October 2020

Analyses of Intermediate-Stage Hepatocellular Carcinoma Patients Receiving Transarterial Chemoembolization prior to Designing Clinical Trials.

Liver Cancer 2020 Sep 22;9(5):596-612. Epub 2020 Jul 22.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Background: Intermediate-stage hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has a high frequency of recurrence and progression to advanced stage after transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), particularly in patients with high tumor burden. Promising new results from immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) and ICI-based therapies are expected to replace TACE, especially in HCC patients with high tumor burden.

Aims: The present study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of TACE with a view to design clinical trials comparing TACE and ICIs.

Methods: We retrospectively identified intermediate-stage HCC patients undergoing TACE from our database and subdivided patients into low- and high-burden groups based on three subclassification models using the diameter of the maximum tumor and the number of tumors. Clinical outcomes were compared between low- and high-burden intermediate-stage HCC.

Results: Of 1,161 newly diagnosed HCC patients, 316 were diagnosed with intermediate-stage disease and underwent TACE. The median overall survival from high-burden intermediate-stage disease was not significantly different by clinical course, reaching high tumor burden in all subclassification models. The prognosis of high-burden patients after initial TACE was poor compared with low-burden patients for two models (except for the up-to-seven criteria). In all three models, high-burden patients showed a poor durable response rate (DRR) both ≥3 months and ≥6 months and poor prognosis after TACE. Moreover, patients with confirmed durable response ≥3 months and ≥6 months showed better survival outcomes for high-burden intermediate-stage HCC.

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate the basis for selecting a population that would not benefit from TACE and setting DRR ≥3 months or ≥6 months as alternative endpoints when designing clinical trials comparing TACE and ICIs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000508809DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7548915PMC
September 2020

Hepatic Arterial Infusion Chemotherapy versus Sorafenib in Patients with Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

Liver Cancer 2020 Sep 24;9(5):583-595. Epub 2020 Jul 24.

Yamanashi Prefectural Central Hospital, Kofu, Japan.

Background: Prior to the approval of sorafenib, hepatic arterial infusion chemotherapy (HAIC) was offered to patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in East Asia, particularly Japan. According to the Japanese guidelines, HAIC is recommended as one of the treatment options in patients without extrahepatic metastasis (EHM).

Methods: The present cohort study compared the use of HAIC and sorafenib on outcomes of patients with advanced HCC. Consecutive patients with advanced HCC who received HAIC or sorafenib as a first-line systemic therapy were enrolled from 10 Japanese institutions. The primary outcomes were overall survival (OS) in patients with macrovascular invasion (MVI), but without EHM, and OS in patients without both MVI and EHM.

Results: Between 2009 and 2016, 2,006 patients were enrolled (541 HAIC patients, 1,465 sorafenib patients). After propensity score matching, the OS of patients with MVI but without EHM was significantly longer in the HAIC group compared with the sorafenib group (10.1 vs. 9.1 months for the HAIC and sorafenib groups, respectively; = 170 for each group; hazard ratio [HR] 0.668; 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 0.475-0.935; = 0.018). There was no significant difference in OS between patients without both MVI and EHM (12.2 vs. 15.4 months for the HAIC and sorafenib groups, respectively; = 76 in each cohort after propensity score matching; HR 1.227; 95% CI 0.699-2.155; = 0.475).

Conclusion: HAIC is a potential front-line treatment choice in a subpopulation of patients with advanced HCC with MVI but without EHM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000508724DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7548914PMC
September 2020

The Efficacy of Linked Color Imaging in the Endoscopic Diagnosis of Barrett's Esophagus and Esophageal Adenocarcinoma.

Gastroenterol Res Pract 2020 29;2020:9604345. Epub 2020 Sep 29.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University Chiba, Japan.

Background: The present study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of linked color imaging (LCI) in diagnosing Barrett's esophagus (BE) and esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC).

Methods: A total of 112 and 12 consecutive patients with BE and EAC were analyzed. The visibility scores of BE and EAC ranging from 4 (excellent visibility) to 0 (not detectable) were evaluated by three trainees and three experts using white light imaging (WLI), LCI mode, and blue laser imaging bright (BLI-b) mode. In addition, L∗a∗b∗ color values and color differences (ΔE∗) were evaluated using the CIELAB color space system.

Results: The visibility score of the BE in LCI mode (2.94 ± 1.32) was significantly higher than those in WLI (2.46 ± 1.48) and BLI-b mode (2.35 ± 1.46) ( < 0.01). The color difference (ΔE∗) from the adjacent gastric mucosa in LCI mode (17.11 ± 8.53) was significantly higher than those in other modes (12.52 ± 9.37 in WLI and 11.96 ± 6.59 in BLI-b mode, < 0.01). The visibility scores of EAC in LCI mode (2.56 ± 1.47) and BLI-b mode (2.51 ± 1.28) were significantly higher than that in WLI (1.64 ± 1.46) ( < 0.01). The color difference (ΔE∗) from the adjacent normal Barrett's mucosa in LCI mode (19.96 ± 7.97) was significantly higher than that in WLI (12.95 ± 11.86) ( = 0.03).

Conclusion: The present findings suggest that LCI increases the visibility of BE and EAC and contributes to the improvement of the detection of these lesions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2020/9604345DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7542478PMC
September 2020

Role of Autoimmunity in Patients Transplanted for Acute Liver Failure of Unknown Origin: A Clinical and Graft Biopsy Analysis.

Liver Transpl 2021 02 22;27(2):309-310. Epub 2020 Nov 22.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/lt.25917DOI Listing
February 2021

Sofosbuvir plus velpatasvir treatment for hepatitis C virus in patients with decompensated cirrhosis: a Japanese real-world multicenter study.

J Gastroenterol 2021 Jan 1;56(1):67-77. Epub 2020 Oct 1.

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, 2-2 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka, 565-0871, Japan.

Background: Real-world data on the efficacy and safety of sofosbuvir plus velpatasvir (SOF/VEL) treatment for patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related decompensated cirrhosis are limited in Japan.

Methods: A total of 190 patients with compensated (108) or decompensated (82) cirrhosis who initiated direct-acting antiviral (DAA) treatment between February 2019 and August 2019 were enrolled. Sustained virologic response (SVR) was defined as undetectable serum HCV-RNA at 12 weeks after the end of treatment (EOT).

Results: The SVR12 rates were 92.6% in patients with compensated cirrhosis and 90.2% in patients with decompensated cirrhosis (p = 0.564), and the treatment completion rates were 98.1% and 96.3%, respectively (p = 0.372). In patients with decompensated cirrhosis, 3 patients discontinued treatment and 2 patients died because of liver-related events. In patients with decompensated cirrhosis with SVR12, 50% of patients with Child-Pugh class B at baseline showed improvement to class A at SVR12, and 27% and 9% of patients with Child-Pugh class C at baseline showed improvement to class B and class A at SVR12, respectively. Patients who achieved SVR12 showed elevated serum albumin levels at the EOT, which were further elevated at SVR12, but no elevated serum albumin levels after the EOT were observed in patients with baseline serum albumin levels less than 2.8 g/dl.

Conclusions: Real-world efficacy of SOF/VEL treatment for patients with decompensated cirrhosis was similar to Japanese phase 3 study, although treatment discontinuation and death related to liver disease occurred. In patients with poor hepatic reserve, whether it improves continuously after viral clearance requires further evaluation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00535-020-01733-4DOI Listing
January 2021

Potential of Lenvatinib for an Expanded Indication from the REFLECT Trial in Patients with Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

Liver Cancer 2020 Aug 5;9(4):382-396. Epub 2020 May 5.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Background: The present study aimed to assess the efficacy and safety of lenvatinib and verify the possibility of lenvatinib for the expanded indication from the REFLECT trial in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in real-world practice, primarily focusing on the population that was excluded in the REFLECT trial.

Methods: We retrospectively collected data on patients with advanced HCC who were administered lenvatinib in 7 institutions in Japan.

Results: Of 152 advanced HCC patients, 95 and 57 patients received lenvatinib in first-line and second- or later-line systemic therapies, respectively. The median progression-free survival in Child-Pugh class A patients was nearly equal between first- and second- or later-line therapies (5.2 months; 95% CI 3.7-6.9 for first line, 4.8 months; 95% CI 3.8-5.9 for second or later line, = 0.933). According to the modified Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors, the objective response rate of 27 patients (18%) who showed a high burden of intrahepatic lesions (i.e., main portal vein and/or bile duct invasion or 50% or higher liver occupation) at baseline radiological assessment was 41% and similar with that of other population. The present study included 20 patients (13%) with Child-Pugh class B. These patients observed high frequency rates of liver function-related adverse events due to lenvatinib. The 8-week dose intensity of lenvatinib had a strong correlation with liver function according to both the Child-Pugh and albumin - bilirubin scores.

Conclusion: Lenvatinib had potential benefits for patients with advanced HCC with second- or later-line therapies and a high burden of intrahepatic lesions. Dose modification should be paid increased attention among patients with poor liver function, such as Child-Pugh class B patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000507022DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7506220PMC
August 2020

Comprehensive Analysis of Barrett's Esophagus: Focused on Carcinogenic Potential for Barrett's Cancer in Japanese Patients.

Dig Dis Sci 2020 Aug 25. Epub 2020 Aug 25.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University Hospital, Inohana 1-8-1, Chiba-City, 260-8670, Japan.

Background/aim: Barrett's esophagus (BE) is a precursor of esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC). Therefore, an accurate diagnosis of BE is important for the subsequent follow-up and early detection of EAC. However, the definitions of BE have not been standardized worldwide; columnar-lined epithelium (CLE) without intestinal metaplasia (IM) and/or < 1 cm is not diagnosed as BE in most countries. This study aimed to clarify the malignant potential of CLE without IM and/or < 1 cm genetically.

Method: A total of 96 consecutive patients (including nine patients with EAC) who had CLE were examined. Biopsies for CLE were conducted, and patients were divided into those with IM and > 1 cm (Group A) and those without IM and/or < 1 cm (Group B). Malignant potential was assessed using immunochemical staining for p53. Moreover, causative genes were examined using next-generation sequencing (NGS) on ten patients without Helicobacter pylori infection and without atrophic gastritis.

Result: Of the 96 patients, 66 were in Group B. The proportion of carcinoma/dysplasia in Group A was significantly higher than that in Group B (26.7% in Group A and 1.5% in Group B; p < 0.01). However, one EAC patient was found in Group B. In the immunostaining study for non-EAC patients, an abnormal expression of p53 was not observed in Group A, whereas p53 loss was observed in three patients (4.6%) in Group B. In the NGS study, a TP53 mutation was found in Group B.

Conclusion: CLE without IM and/or < 1 cm has malignant potential. This result suggests that patients with CLE as well as BE need follow-up.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10620-020-06563-1DOI Listing
August 2020

Interferon-γ induced PD-L1 expression and soluble PD-L1 production in gastric cancer.

Oncol Lett 2020 Sep 19;20(3):2161-2168. Epub 2020 Jun 19.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chuo-ku, Chiba 260-8670, Japan.

Programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) plays an essential role in tumor cell escape from anti-tumor immunity in various types of cancer, including gastric cancer (GC). The present study investigated the intracellular and membrane-bound expression of PD-L1 in the GC cell lines MKN1, MKN74, KATO III and OCUM-1. Furthermore, soluble PD-L1 (sPD-L1) level in the supernatant of GC cells and the serum of patients with GC and healthy controls was determined by ELISA. Interferon (IFN)-γ treatment of cells resulted in increased cytoplasmic expression of PD-L1 in GC cells in a dose-dependent manner, except for MKN74 cells; however, there was no association between tumor necrosis factor-α treatment and enhanced PD-L1 expression. Concordant with these findings, results from flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that membrane-bound PD-L1 expression was also increased following GC cell treatment with IFN-γ in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, significant sPD-L1 overproduction was observed only in the culture supernatant of OCUM-1 cells. Serum level of sPD-L1 was significantly increased in patients with GC, in particular in stage IV patients, compared with healthy controls. In conclusion, the present study demonstrated that IFN-γ treatment increased the intracellular and membrane-bound PD-L1 expression in GC cells. In addition, sPD-L1 was detected not only in the supernatant of GC cells but also in the serum of patients with GC. Further investigation on the underlying mechanism of regulation of PD-L1 expression and sPD-L1 production is required.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3892/ol.2020.11757DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7400993PMC
September 2020

Diverse transitions in diabetes status during the clinical course of patients with resectable pancreatic cancer.

Jpn J Clin Oncol 2020 Dec;50(12):1403-1411

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Objective: Pancreatic cancer and diabetes status have complex bilateral interactions; therefore, understanding their clinical features is essential for the clinical management of pancreatic cancer patients. We aimed to evaluate the diabetes status before diagnosis, after resection and until the time of recurrence in patients with resectable pancreatic cancer and to clarify the correlations among the clinical course of pancreatic cancer, operative procedure and diabetes status.

Methods: Between 2011 and 2016, we retrospectively identified 189 pancreatic cancer patients who underwent pancreatoduodenectomy or distal pancreatectomy at our institution. The entire clinical course of each patient was retrieved from the medical records, and the diabetes status in the longest possible duration was assessed.

Results: Among 115 pancreatic cancer patients who had normal glucose tolerance at the time of resection, 22 (19.1%) developed type 2 diabetes after resection. In a multivariate analysis, distal pancreatectomy was strongly associated with the development of postoperative diabetes. On the other hand, 74 pancreatic cancer patients had already been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at the time of resection. During the follow-up period, 15 patients were noted to have diabetes resolution after resection; interestingly, the majority of these patients had newly diagnosed diabetes, which was defined as the diagnosis of diabetes within 3 months before resection. Moreover, newly diagnosed diabetes was an independent factor for diabetes resolution after resection.

Conclusions: In pancreatic cancer patients who underwent pancreatectomy, distal pancreatectomy was correlated with postoperative diabetes, and newly diagnosed diabetes had a high probability of resolution after resection.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jjco/hyaa136DOI Listing
December 2020

Computer-aided diagnosis system using only white-light endoscopy for the prediction of invasion depth in colorectal cancer.

Gastrointest Endosc 2021 Mar 29;93(3):647-653. Epub 2020 Jul 29.

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Background And Aims: Endoscopic treatment is recommended for low-grade dysplasia (LGD), high-grade dysplasia (HGD), and colorectal cancer (CRC) with submucosal (SM) invasion <1000 μm. However, diagnosis of invasion depth requires experience and is often difficult. This study developed and evaluated a novel computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) system to determine whether endoscopic treatment is appropriate for colorectal lesions using only white-light endoscopy (WLE).

Methods: We extracted 3442 images from 1035 consecutive colorectal lesions (105 LGDs, 377 HGDs, 107 CRCs with SM <1000 μm, 146 CRCs with SM ≥1000 μm, and 300 advanced CRCs). All images were WLE, nonmagnified, and nonstained. We developed a novel CAD system using 2751 images; the remaining 691 images were evaluated by the CAD system as a test set. The capability of the CAD system to distinguish endoscopically treatable lesions and untreatable lesions was assessed and compared with the results from 2 trainees and 2 experts.

Results: The CAD system distinguished endoscopically treatable from untreatable lesions with 96.7% sensitivity, 75.0% specificity, and 90.3% accuracy. These values were significantly higher than those from trainees (92.1%, 67.6%, and 84.9%; P < .01, <.01, and <.01, respectively) and were comparable with those from experts (96.5%, 72.5%, and 89.4%, respectively). Trainees assisted by the CAD system demonstrated a diagnostic capability comparable with that of experts.

Conclusions: The CAD system had good diagnostic capability for making treatment decisions for colorectal lesions. This system may enable a more convenient and accurate diagnosis using only WLE.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gie.2020.07.053DOI Listing
March 2021

Leukotriene receptor antagonists enhance HCC treatment efficacy by inhibiting ADAMs and suppressing MICA shedding.

Cancer Immunol Immunother 2021 Jan 18;70(1):203-213. Epub 2020 Jul 18.

Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Showa University School of Medicine, 1-5-8 Hatanodai, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo, 142-8666, Japan.

In our previous genome-wide association study, we demonstrated the association between MHC class I-related chain A (MICA) and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development in patients with chronic hepatitis C. Increasing membrane-bound MICA (mMICA) in cancer cells by reducing MICA sheddases facilitates natural killer (NK) cell-mediated cytotoxicity. Our recent study clarified that A disintegrin and metalloproteases (ADAM), including ADAM9, are MICA sheddases in HCC, and that the suppression of ADAMs increases mMICA, demonstrating the rationality of mMICA-NK targeted therapy. Furthermore, we showed that regorafenib suppresses ADAM9 transcriptionally and translationally. A library of FDA-approved drugs was screened for more efficient inhibitors of ADAM9. Flow cytometry evaluation of the expression of mMICA after treatment with various candidate drugs identified leukotriene receptor antagonists as potential ADAM9 inhibitors. Furthermore, leukotriene receptor antagonists alone or in combination with regorafenib upregulated mMICA, which was in turn downregulated by leukotriene C4 and D4 via ADAM9 function. Our study demonstrates that leukotriene receptor antagonists could be developed as novel drugs for immunological control and suppression of ADAM9 in HCC. Further, leukotriene receptor antagonists should be explored as combination therapy partners with conventional multi-kinase inhibitors for developing therapeutic strategies with enhanced efficacies for HCC management and treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00262-020-02660-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7838147PMC
January 2021

Recent Strategies for Targeted Brain Drug Delivery.

Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo) 2020 ;68(7):567-582

Department of Pharmaceutical Informatics, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki University.

Because the brain is the most important human organ, many brain disorders can cause severe symptoms. For example, glioma, one type of brain tumor, is progressive and lethal, while neurodegenerative diseases cause severe disability. Nevertheless, medical treatment for brain diseases remains unsatisfactory, and therefore innovative therapies are desired. However, the development of therapies to treat some cerebral diseases is difficult because the blood-brain barrier (BBB) or blood-brain tumor barrier prevents drugs from entering the brain. Hence, drug delivery system (DDS) strategies are required to deliver therapeutic agents to the brain. Recently, brain-targeted DDS have been developed, which increases the quality of therapy for cerebral disorders. This review gives an overview of recent brain-targeting DDS strategies. First, it describes strategies to cross the BBB. This includes BBB-crossing ligand modification or temporal BBB permeabilization. Strategies to avoid the BBB using local administration are also summarized. Intrabrain drug distribution is a crucial factor that directly determines the therapeutic effect, and thus it is important to evaluate drug distribution using optimal methods. We introduce some methods for evaluating drug distribution in the brain. Finally, applications of brain-targeted DDS for the treatment of brain tumors, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and stroke are explained.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1248/cpb.c20-00041DOI Listing
February 2021

Infectious complications and timing for liver transplantation in autoimmune acute liver failure in Japan: a subanalysis based on nationwide surveys between 2010 and 2015.

J Gastroenterol 2020 Sep 17;55(9):888-898. Epub 2020 Jun 17.

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Faculty of Medicine, Saitama Medical University, Saitama, Japan.

Background: The prognosis of autoimmune acute liver failure (ALF) without liver transplantation (LT) is poor worldwide. We subanalyzed infectious complications of autoimmune ALF using data of nationwide surveys between 2010 and 2015 retrospectively and tried to determine when to evaluate the efficacy of corticosteroid (CS) treatment or abandon it for LT based on objective data.

Methods: One hundred and forty-four patients with autoimmune ALF, comprising 79 ALF with coma ≤ I, 52 ALF with coma ≥ II and 13 late onset hepatic failure (LOHF), were analyzed.

Results: CS was administered to 140 (97%) patients. Thirty-seven (26%) patients had infectious complications. Patients with infection revealed more advanced disease type (p < 0.001) and poorer spontaneous survival (p < 0.001) than those without infection. Median (interquartile range) duration between diagnosis of ALF and onset of infection was 18.5 (11-36) days, and that between introduction of CS and onset of infection was 17 (10.5-36) days. Seventy-nine (55%) recovered without LT, 14 (10%) received LT and 51 (35%) died without LT. Dead or transplanted patients were older (p = 0.0057), and revealed more advanced liver failure (p < 0.001) and more occurrence of infection (p < 0.001).

Conclusions: A critical point for evaluating the efficacy of CS treatment and switching to LT is at most 2-week after diagnosis of ALF and introduction of CS. More important, we should accelerate the point and prepare for LT in cases of ALF with coma ≥ II and LOHF, and we should have performed LT by then at the latest in case of failure to improve.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00535-020-01699-3DOI Listing
September 2020

A Novel Role of Interleukin 13 Receptor alpha2 in Perineural Invasion and its Association with Poor Prognosis of Patients with Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma.

Cancers (Basel) 2020 May 20;12(5). Epub 2020 May 20.

Tumor Vaccines and Biotechnology Branch, Division of Cellular and Gene Therapies, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, Silver Spring, MD 20993, USA.

Perineural invasion (PNI) is one of the major pathological characteristics of pancreatic ductal adeno-carcinoma (PDAC), which is mediated by invading cancer cells into nerve cells. Herein, we identify the overexpression of Interleukin-13 Receptor alpha2 (IL-13Rα2) in the PNI from 236 PDAC samples by studying its expression at the protein levels by immunohistochemistry (IHC) and the RNA level by in situ hybridization (ISH). We observe that ≥75% samples overexpressed IL-13Rα2 by IHC and ISH in grade 2 and 3 tumors, while ≥64% stage II and III tumors overexpressed IL-13Rα2 (≥2+). Interestingly, ≥36 % peripancreatic neural plexus (PL) and ≥70% nerve endings (Ne) among PNI in PDAC samples showed higher levels of IL-13Rα2 (≥2+). IL-13Rα2 +ve PL and Ne subjects survived significantly less than IL-13Rα2 -ve subjects, suggesting that IL-13Rα2 may have a unique role as a biomarker of PNI-aggressiveness. Importantly, IL-13Rα2 may be a therapeutic target for intervention, which might not only prolong patient survival but also help alleviate pain attributed to perineural invasion. Our study uncovers a novel role of IL-13Rα2 in PNI as a key factor of the disease severity, thus revealing a therapeutically targetable option for PDAC and to facilitate PNI-associated pain management.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers12051294DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7281570PMC
May 2020

Impact of ineffective esophageal motility on chemical clearance in patients with gastroesophageal reflux symptoms.

Dis Esophagus 2020 Sep;33(9)

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

Ineffective esophageal motility (IEM) is the most common manometric abnormality in gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). However, the impact of IEM on esophageal chemical clearance has not been fully investigated. This study aimed to determine the impact of IEM on esophageal chemical clearance in patients with GERD. A total of 369 patients with GERD symptoms who underwent upper endoscopy and high-resolution manometry (HRM) test were retrospectively analyzed. The relationship between IEM and erosive esophagitis was examined. In addition, the impact of IEM on chemical clearance was examined in patients who underwent an additional combined multichannel intraluminal impedance-pH (MII-pH) test. Esophageal chemical clearance capability was evaluated via postreflux swallow-induced peristaltic wave (PSPW) index and acid clearance time (ACT). Of 369 patients, 181 (49.1%) had esophageal motility disorders, of which 78 (21.1%) had IEM. The proportion of IEM patients in those with erosive esophagitis and those without were 16.2% and 21.7%, respectively, and no significant difference was observed (P = 0.53). After excluding patients other than those with IEM and normal esophageal motility, 64 subsequently underwent MII-pH test. The median values of the PSPW index in the IEM and normal esophageal motility group were 11.1% (4.2%-20.0%) and 17.1% (9.8%-30.6%), respectively. The PSPW index was significantly lower in the IEM group than in the normal esophageal motility group (P < 0.05). The median ACT values in the IEM group and normal esophageal motility group were 125.5 (54.0-183.5) seconds and 60.0 (27.2-105.7) seconds, respectively. The ACT was significantly longer in the IEM group than in the normal esophageal motility group (P < 0.05). In conclusion, IEM was found to be associated with chemical clearance dysfunction as measured against the PSPW index and ACT. As this condition could be a risk factor for GERD, future treatments should be developed with a focus on chemical clearance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/dote/doaa026DOI Listing
September 2020

Weight-based dosing of lenvatinib for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma.

Hepatobiliary Surg Nutr 2020 Apr;9(2):253-254

Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/hbsn.2019.09.21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7188523PMC
April 2020