Kunimasa Ohta, PhD,
Associate Professor Kumamoto University
Email: Lab website:

Areas of Interest: Developmental Biology

Research focus:

The subventricular zone (SVZ) is one of two regions where neurogenesis persists in the postnatal brain. We found Ependymal cells in SVZ express the Tsukushi (TSK), which worked as a multiple signaling modulator at the extracellular region by regulating TGF-ß, FGF, Notch, and Wnt signaling cascades. In TSK knockout (KO) mice, lateral ventricle expansion was observed in postnatal stage like communicating hydrocephalus disease model without expansion of aqueduct. In order to study the cause of expansion of lateral ventricle we focused on neurogenesis in SVZ area. Aberrant cell proliferation and cell death were detected in SVZ in TSK KO mice. Lateral ventricle size was rescued when TSK is overexpressed in TSK KO mice using transgenic mice. Here, we propose TSK controls alteration of the cell proliferation and apoptosis via signal transduction in SVZ.