Niigata University of Health and Welfare
Niigata-shi, Japan

Niigata University of Health and Welfare is a private university in Niigata, Niigata, Japan. It was established in 2001. Wikipedia.

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Sugawara K.,Kanagawa University of Human Services | Tanabe S.,Health Science University | Suzuki T.,Kanagawa University of Human Services | Saitoh K.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare | Higashi T.,Nagasaki University
Behavioural Brain Research | Year: 2016

We postulated that gradual muscle relaxation during motor learning would dynamically change activity in the primary motor cortex (M1) and modify short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI). Thus, we compared changes in M1 excitability both pre and post motor learning during gradual muscle relaxation. Thirteen healthy participants were asked to gradually relax their muscles from an isometric right wrist extension (30% maximum voluntary contraction; MVC) using a tracking task for motor learning. Single or paired transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) was applied at either 20% or 80% of the downward force output during muscle release from 30% MVC, and we compared the effects of motor learning immediately after the 1st and 10th blocks. Motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) from the extensor and flexor carpi radialis (ECR and FCR) were then measured and compared to evaluate their relationship before and after motor learning. In both muscles and each downward force output, motor cortex excitability during muscle relaxation was significantly increased following motor learning. In the ECR, the SICI in the 10th block was significantly increased during the 80% waveform decline compared to the SICI in the 1st block. In the FCR, the SICI also exhibited a greater inhibitory effect when muscle relaxation was terminated following motor learning. During motor training, acquisition of the ability to control muscle relaxation increased the SICI in both the ECR and FCR during motor termination. This finding aids in our understanding of the cortical mechanisms that underlie muscle relaxation during motor learning. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Yokoi K.,Tohoku University | Nishio Y.,Tohoku University | Uchiyama M.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare | Shimomura T.,Akita | And 2 more authors.
Neuropsychologia | Year: 2014

By definition, visual illusions and hallucinations differ in whether the perceived objects exist in reality. A recent study challenged this dichotomy, in which pareidolias, a type of complex visual illusion involving ambiguous forms being perceived as meaningful objects, are very common and phenomenologically similar to visual hallucinations in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). We hypothesise that a common psychological mechanism exists between pareidolias and visual hallucinations in DLB that confers meaning upon meaningless visual information. Furthermore, we believe that these two types of visual misperceptions have a common underlying neural mechanism, namely, cholinergic insufficiency. The current study investigated pareidolic illusions using meaningless visual noise stimuli (the noise pareidolia test) in 34 patients with DLB, 34 patients with Alzheimer[U+05F3]s disease and 28 healthy controls. Fifteen patients with DLB were administered the noise pareidolia test twice, before and after donepezil treatment. Three major findings were discovered: (1) DLB patients saw meaningful illusory images (pareidolias) in meaningless visual stimuli, (2) the number of pareidolic responses correlated with the severity of visual hallucinations, and (3) cholinergic enhancement reduced both the number of pareidolias and the severity of visual hallucinations in patients with DLB. These findings suggest that a common underlying psychological and neural mechanism exists between pareidolias and visual hallucinations in DLB. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Kondo A.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare
Yakugaku Zasshi | Year: 2016

The increasing number of law-evading drug users in Japan is becoming a serious social problem. Previous studies have shown that law-evading drug users are younger, more educated, and less antisocial than methamphetamine users. They also tend to have some type of psychiatric disorder before starting drug use; therefore one of the reasons that they start using drugs may be to alleviate certain psychiatric symptoms. Furthermore, if drug users are successful in avoiding arrest, they often lack the motivation to stop, which makes treatment difficult. Therapists are required to be non-confrontational, to keep pace with their patients, and to take their patients’ other existing disorders into account. Recently, the Matrix Model has shown promise as a new treatment strategy for drug abusers in Japan. The Matrix Model, which was originally developed in response to the 1980s cocaine epidemic in the USA, is an intensive outpatient treatment approach for drug abuse and dependence. The Matrix Model integrates cognitive-behavioral therapy, contingency management, motivational interviewing, 12-step facilitation, family involvement, and so on, with a directive, non-confrontational approach, and this style of therapy seems to fit with law-evading drug users. A Matrix Model-based treatment program was first established in Japan in 2006. The aim of this report is to introduce and assess the benefits of the TAMA Mental Health and Welfare Center Relapse Prevention Program, a Matrix Model-based treatment program established at the Tama Mental Health and Welfare Center in 2007. © 2016 The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan.

Cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) preserves patients’ lives during open heart surgery by providing sufficient oxygen delivery and blood supply to vital organs. However, previous studies have suggested that the interaction of hemodilution and vascular hyperpermeability induces tissue edema and an inflammatory response during CPB. In this study, we hypothesized that suppression of the systemic inflammatory response and tissue edema during CPB by a plasma substitute (hydroxyethyl starch: HES).Rats (450-500 g) were divided into a SHAM group (n=5), a Ringer’s acetate CPB group (n=7), and an HES CPB group (n=7). In the Ringer’s acetate group, the CPB circuit was primed with Ringer’s acetate solution and in the HES CPB group, it was primed with HES formulation (6% hydroxyethyl starch 130/0.4). Blood samples were collected before (baseline) and 30, 60, 90 and 120 min after initiation of CPB.Plasma cytokine levels of tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin (IL)-6, and IL-10, and biochemical markers (lactate dehydrogenase, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, liver-type fatty acid binding protein, and colloid osmotic pressure (COP) were measured before and 30, 60, 90, and 120 min after the initiation of CPB.In the Ringer’s acetate CPB group, the inflammatory cytokines and biochemical markers increased significantly during CPB compared with the SHAM group, but such increases were significantly suppressed in the HES CPB group. In addition, during CPB, it was possible to preserve normal plasma COP in the HES CPB group.The data suggest that 6% HES 130/0.4 is effective for suppressing the inflammatory response during CPB. Copyright © 2017 by the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs

Goto K.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare | Abe K.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare
Applied Ergonomics | Year: 2017

Although workers in Japan are required to wear safety footwear, there is concern about occupational accidents that occur when wearing safety shoes. This study aimed to analyze the effect of wearing hardsoled safety shoes on both spatiotemporal gait characteristics and the muscle activity in the lower extremities. Seventeen young women participated in this study. A 5-m gait trial and a surface electromyography trial were conducted while the women walked in either safety shoes or sports shoes. Paired t-tests were performed to analyze the differences in gait characteristics when walking in the two different pairs of shoes. Walking in safety shoes was associated with a significant increase in vastus lateralis, biceps femoris and tibialis anterior activity. This increased muscle activity in the lower extremities is likely compensating for the lower flexibility of the safety shoes. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Sahu A.,University of Pittsburgh | Koshinaka K.,University of Pittsburgh | Koshinaka K.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare | Sahu M.,University of Pittsburgh
Journal of Neuroendocrinology | Year: 2013

Leptin, the product of the obese gene, regulates energy homeostasis by acting primarily at the level of the hypothalamus. Leptin action through its receptor involves various pathways, including the signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)3, phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), and phosphodiesterase 3B (PDE3B)-cAMP signalling in the central nervous system and peripheral tissues. In the hypothalamus, leptin stimulates STAT3 activation, and induces PI3K and PDE3B activities, among others. We have previously demonstrated that PDE3B activation in the hypothalamus is critical for transducing the anorectic and body weight reducing effects of leptin. Similarly, PI3K has been implicated to play a critical role in leptin signalling in the hypothalamus. Although, in the insulin signalling pathway, PI3K is known to be an upstream regulator of PDE3B in non-neuronal tissues, it is still unknown whether this is also the case for leptin signalling in the hypothalamus. To address this possibility, the effect of wortmannin, a specific PI3K inhibitor, was examined on leptin-induced PDE3B activity in the hypothalamus of male rats. Intracerebroventricular injection of leptin (4 μg) significantly increased PDE3B activity by two-fold in the hypothalamus as expected. However, previous administration of wortmannin completely reversed the stimulatory effect of leptin on PDE3B activity in the hypothalamus. To investigate whether leptin stimulates phospho (p)-Akt levels and that there might be a possible upstream regulator of PDE3B, we examined the effects of i.c.v. leptin on p-Akt levels in the hypothalamus and compared them with the known stimulatory effect of insulin on p-Akt. We observed that insulin increased p-Akt levels but leptin failed to do so, although it increased p-STAT3 levels, in the rat hypothalamus. Immunocytochemistry confirmed the biochemical findings in that leptin failed but insulin increased the number of p-Akt positive cells in various hypothalamic nuclei. Taken together, these results implicate PI3K but not Akt as an upstream regulator of the PDE3B pathway of leptin signalling in the rat hypothalamus. © 2012 British Society for Neuroendocrinology.

Tamaki H.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare
Journal of musculoskeletal & neuronal interactions | Year: 2013

The present study aimed to clarify the structural recovery, and to compare the time course of morphological changes in trabeculae and the process of bone mass change in rat tibiae following temporary immobilization of hind limb by sciatic neurectomy or nerve freezing. In 11-week-old male Fischer 344 rats, 4-5 mm of the sciatic nerve was removed (neurectomy group) or frozen by 5-second application of a stainless steel rod immersed in liquid nitrogen (nerve-freezing group). Quantitative changes in cancellous bone were assessed by histomorphometry. The results clarified that: trabecular bone volume (BV/TV) decreases until 3 weeks after denervation, and in the nerve-freezing group, it then increases from week 4, recovering to pre-surgery levels by week 10 (no recovery was seen in the neurectomy group); in the initial phase of bone atrophy, the decrease in BV/TV is more gradual in the nerve-freezing group than in the neurectomy group; and changes in trabecular architecture in the bone atrophy-recovery process are strongly associated with changes in trabecular thickness. The findings suggested that after transient injury by nerve freezing and subsequent recovery of neuromuscular function, bone tissue undergoes recovery from bone loss, but that trabeculae may not show complete structural recovery.

Sakuma M.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare
Clinical calcium | Year: 2012

Osteoporosis is one of the main diseases of the locomotive syndrome. Exercise therapy is a basic approach for prevention and treatment of osteoporosis, and is effective for increasing bone mineral density and preventing fall. Single foothold standing with the eyes open for one minute and squatting by "rokotore" are recommended as exercises that are easy for elderly people. Strengthening of back muscles is also useful for prevention of round back due to osteoporosis. We suggest that improved outcomes may be achieved by combining some of these exercises.

Kushida O.,Niigata University of Health and Welfare
[Nihon kōshū eisei zasshi] Japanese journal of public health | Year: 2012

A core construct of the Transtheoretical model is that the processes and stages of change are strongly related to observable behavioral changes. We created the Processes of Change Scale of vegetable consumption behavior and examined the validity and reliability of this scale. In September 2009, a self-administered questionnaire was administered to male Japanese employees, aged 20-59 years, working at 20 worksites in Niigata City in Japan. The stages of change (precontempration, contemplation, preparation, action, and maintenance stage) were measured using 2 items that assessed participants' current implementation of the target behavior (eating 5 or more servings of vegetables per day) and their readiness to change their habits. The Processes of Change Scale of vegetable consumption behavior comprised 10 items assessing 5 cognitive processes (consciousness raising, emotional arousal, environmental reevaluation, self-reevaluation, and social liberation) and 5 behavioral processes (commitment, rewards, helping relationships, countering, and environment control). Each item was selected from an existing scale. Decisional balance (pros [2 items] and cons [2 items]), and self-efficacy (3 items) were also assessed, because these constructs were considered to be relevant to the processes of change. The internal consistency reliability of the scale was examined using Cronbach's alpha. Its construct validity was examined using a factor analysis of the processes of change, decisional balance, and self-efficacy variables, while its criterion-related validity was determined by assessing the association between the scale scores and the stages of change. The data of 527 (out of 600) participants (mean age, 41.1 years) were analyzed. Results indicated that the Processes of Change Scale had sufficient internal consistency reliability (Cronbach's alpha: cognitive processes=0.722, behavioral processes=0.803). The processes of change were divided into 2 factors: "consciousness raising, emotional arousal, environmental reevaluation, self-reevaluation, commitment, rewards, helping relationships, and social liberation" and "countering and environment control" in the factor analysis. Moreover, each construct--the processes of change, decisional balance, and self-efficacy--could be classified into different factors. The scores for cognitive processes were higher in the contemplation and preparation stages than in the precontemplation stage (P<0.05). Scores for behavioral processes increased from the precontemplation stage to the preparation stages (P<0.05), and were higher in the action + maintenance stage than in the precontemplation stage (P< 0.05). For male workers, the Processes of Change Scale has sufficient validity and reliability, as demonstrated by the internal fitness and the construct and criterion-related validity of the scale found in this study.

Matsui T.,University of Tsukuba | Soya S.,University of Tsukuba | Okamoto M.,University of Tsukuba | Ichitani Y.,University of Tsukuba | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Physiology | Year: 2011

Brain glycogen could be a critical energy source for brain activity when the glucose supply from the blood is inadequate (hypoglycaemia). Although untested, it is hypothesized that during prolonged exhaustive exercise that induces hypoglycaemia and muscular glycogen depletion, the resultant hypoglycaemia may cause a decrease in brain glycogen. Here, we tested this hypothesis and also investigated the possible involvement of brain monoamines with the reduced levels of brain glycogen. For this purpose, we exercised male Wistar rats on a treadmill for different durations (30-120 min) at moderate intensity (20 m min -1) and measured their brain glycogen levels using high-power microwave irradiation (10 kW). At the end of 30 and 60 min of running, the brain glycogen levels remained unchanged from resting levels, but liver and muscle glycogen decreased. After 120 min of running, the glycogen levels decreased significantly by ∼37-60% in five discrete brain loci (the cerebellum 60%, cortex 48%, hippocampus 43%, brainstem 37% and hypothalamus 34%) compared to those of the sedentary control. The brain glycogen levels in all five regions after running were positively correlated with the respective blood and brain glucose levels. Further, in the cortex, the levels of methoxyhydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG) and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), potential involved in degradation of the brain glycogen, increased during prolonged exercise and negatively correlated with the glycogen levels. These results support the hypothesis that brain glycogen could decrease with prolonged exhaustive exercise. Increased monoamines together with hypoglycaemia should be associated with the development of decreased brain glycogen, suggesting a new clue towards the understanding of central fatigue during prolonged exercise. ©2011 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2011 The Physiological Society.

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