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The Relationship between Living Environment and Oral Function in Elderly Japanese  [PDF]
Naoko Morisaki, Hiroe Uchida, Akiko Miyagawa
Advances in Applied Sociology (AASoci) , 2019, DOI: 10.4236/aasoci.2019.92006
Abstract: This study aims to clarify the current state of oral function among elderly people and to analyze the relation with basic attributes. The subjects of the survey were dependent elderly people receiving nursing care in Japan. We examined the subjects’ age, sex, level of care required, living environment (home or facility), and oral functions. Tongue pressure and oral diadochokinesis (OD) were used to evaluate oral function. The relationship between the basic attributes of the elderly subjects and the oral function evaluation value was analyzed by multiple regression analysis. The average value of tongue pressure was 24.70 ± 10.20 Pa. The average value of OD was 4.7 ± 1.4 for /pa/, 4.6 ± 1.3 for /ta/, and 4.3 ± 1.3 for /ka/. Tongue pressure was found to be significantly related to the degree of care required (p < 0.01). The OD recognized syllables of /pa/, /ta/, /ka/ were significantly related to the degree of need for care and living environment (p < 0.05). The living environment is thought to affect oral function.
Relationship among Subjective Satisfaction with Verbal Communication, Dental Status, and Health-Related Quality of Life in Japanese Community-Residing Elderly Individuals  [PDF]
Shuichi Hara, Hiroko Miura, Kiyoko Yamasaki, Naoko Morisaki, Ken Osaka
Advances in Applied Sociology (AASoci) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/aasoci.2015.51004
Abstract: Aim: We aimed to explore factors related to improving health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among Japanese community-residing elderly individuals. Using a questionnaire, we investigated subjective satisfaction with verbal communication, dental status, and HRQOL in community-residing elderly people. Methods: Subjects were 454 independent elderly individuals, with a mean age of 76.1 ± 6.8 years, living in Japan. The Japanese version of the SF-8 Health Survey was used to evaluate HRQOL. Subjective satisfaction with verbal communication was investigated using a five-point scale. Multiple regression analysis was conducted to identify determinants affecting HRQOL. Covariance structure analysis was conducted to investigate any mutual association between age, presence of natural teeth, satisfaction with verbal communication, and HRQOL. Results: The HRQOL scores of subjects who answered that they were “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with verbal communication were significantly higher than those of subjects in the groups of “neither satisfied nor unsatisfied”, the “unsatisfied”, and the “very unsatisfied” in physical component summary (PCS) scores or mental component summary (MCS) scores of SF-8 (P < 0.001). In multiple regression analysis, age, gender, and satisfaction with verbal communication were independent predictors of PCS scores. Furthermore, age and subjective satisfaction with verbal communication were also independent predictors of MCS scores. There was a significant positive correlation between subjective satisfaction with verbal communication and PCS (r = 0.307, P < 0.001) or MCS (r = 0.435, P < 0.001) in covariance structure analysis. Conclusions: Satisfaction with verbal communication is significantly related to HRQOL among Japanese community-dwelling elderly individuals.
3D Numerical Simulation of Hair Formation Process Using a Particle Model  [PDF]
Katsuya Nagayama, Shogo Matsuoka, Naoko Morisaki, Hiroyuki Taguchi
Open Journal of Regenerative Medicine (OJRM) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ojrm.2015.41001
Abstract: Hair is very important in determining human appearance. Although there are numerous observed data and experimental recordings for hair, a detailed mechanism of hair formation has not yet been elucidated. Therefore, in this study, a simulation of the method of formative process of hair roots was done using a 3D particle model. The model contains details of the cell growth from the hair matrix cells and changes from spherical to non-spherical oval shape. Simulation results were able to exhibit the hair formation process from the base of the hair follicle. Furthermore, at the surface opening of the follicle, the hair structure was recorded. Therefore, this model can be used to clarify the mechanism of hair root formation.
The Role of Neprilysin in Regulating the Hair Cycle
Naoko Morisaki, Atsushi Ohuchi, Shigeru Moriwaki
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0055947
Abstract: In most mammals, each hair follicle undergoes a cyclic process of growing, regressing and resting phases (anagen, catagen, telogen, respectively) called the hair cycle. Various biological factors have been reported to regulate or to synchronize with the hair cycle. Some factors involved in the extracellular matrix, which is a major component of skin tissue, are also thought to regulate the hair cycle. We have focused on an enzyme that degrades elastin, which is associated with skin elasticity. Since our previous study identified skin fibroblast elastase as neprilysin (NEP), we examined the fluctuation of NEP enzyme activity and its expression during the synchronized hair cycle of rats. NEP activity in the skin was elevated at early anagen, and decreased during catagen to telogen. The expression of NEP mRNA and protein levels was modulated similarly. Immunostaining showed changes in NEP localization throughout the hair cycle, from the follicular epithelium during early anagen to the dermal papilla during catagen. To determine whether NEP plays an important role in regulating the hair cycle, we used a specific inhibitor of NEP (NPLT). NPLT was applied topically daily to the dorsal skin of C3H mice, which had been depilated in advance. Mice treated with NPLT had significantly suppressed hair growth. These data suggest that NEP plays an important role in regulating the hair cycle by its increased expression and activity in the follicular epithelium during early anagen.
Development of a Masticatory Indicator Using a Checklist of Chewable Food Items for the Community-Dwelling Elderly
Hiroko Miura,Kayoko Sato,Shuichi Hara,Kiyoko Yamasaki,Naoko Morisaki
ISRN Geriatrics , 2013, DOI: 10.1155/2013/194693
Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to develop a new assessment scale to evaluate masticatory ability among community-dwelling elderly individuals. The study comprised 761 independent elderly subjects residing in the community. We pooled 25 food items with various textures. Based upon the pass rate and nonresponse rate, we extracted 9 food items to be included in the masticatory ability assessment for the community-dwelling elderly (MACE). The reliability of this assessment was determined using Cronbach’s alpha coefficients. We then examined the concurrent validity of the MACE by comparing it with an existing method termed “mastication score.” Additionally, the convergent validity was examined by comparing the correlation coefficients of MACE, general oral health assessment index (GOHAI), and the number of teeth. Cronbach’s alpha coefficient of MACE was 0.89 ( ), indicating satisfactory reliability. MACE was significantly correlated with the mastication score ( ), GOHAI ( ), and the number of teeth ( ). These results suggest that MACE is a useful tool with sufficient reliability and validity to identify declines in masticatory ability among community-dwelling elderly individuals. 1. Introduction It is very important for middle-aged and elderly individuals in particular to maintain a healthy diet. Furthermore, for community-dwelling elderly persons, dietary insufficiency is adversely associated with overall health status [1, 2]. The digestive process begins with mastication, which is influenced by oral health status [3, 4]. Some cross-sectional studies report that chewing function is related to nutritional status, food selection, body composition (sarcopenia), and physical balance [5, 6]. In particular, poor mastication may contribute to restricted fruit and vegetable intake [7, 8]. The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of Japan indicated that 26.6% of Japanese people aged 60–69 years and 40.8% of Japanese people above 70 years of age had difficulty chewing [9] Interestingly, Bradbury et al. reported that the combined approach of improved masticatory ability and provision of suitable nutritional guidance was effective in increasing fruit and vegetable intake among the elderly [10]. Improvement of masticatory status has been stated as a part of the Food and Nutrition Education (Shokuiku) by the Cabinet of Japan [11]. However, few assessments on the masticatory status of community-dwelling elderly individuals have been reported. In many epidemiological studies among community-dwelling elderly persons, subjective evaluation has frequently
Performance Evaluation of Heat Exchangers in OTEC Using Ammonia/Water Mixture as Working Fluid  [PDF]
Takafumi Morisaki, Yasuyuki Ikegami
Open Journal of Fluid Dynamics (OJFD) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/ojfd.2013.34037
Abstract: The ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) system is a promising solution to provide stable electricity supply. Although the available temperature difference in OTEC systems is small, an ammonia/water mixture as working fluid is expected to decrease irreversible losses in the heat exchangers and to improve system performance. However, in actual heat exchangers, an adequate temperature crossing does not occur in the condenser but in the evaporator. Therefore, clarification of this characteristic is important. To date, the logarithmic temperature difference (LMTD) method is used in performance evaluations of OTEC heat exchangers. This method is of limited use if physical properties of fluids vary. A generalized mean temperature difference (GMTD) method is introduced to perform this evaluation. As changes in fluid property values can be considered in the GMTD method, method dependencies on heat exchanger characteristics, effectiveness, and system characteristics can be studied. In particular, GMTD and LMTD using a pure substance were found to be almost equal. Mean temperature differences using mixtures as working fluid were higher in the evaporator, but lower in the condenser, from the GMTD method than from the LMTD method. For higher ammonia concentrations in ammonia/water mixtures, the mean temperature differences from both methods are different.
Characterization of the Long-Term Interaction between Intracellular Reactive Oxygen Species and Oxidative DNA Damage in Murine Lin-/Sca-1+ Cells Exposed to Ionizing Radiation  [PDF]
Junya Ishikawa, Taro Morisaki
International Journal of Medical Physics,Clinical Engineering and Radiation Oncology (IJMPCERO) , 2019, DOI: 10.4236/ijmpcero.2019.82009
Mutations in the Sfpi1 gene are essential for the development of radia-tion-induced acute myeloid leukemia. In this study, we investigated long-term interaction among immature hematopoietic cell number, intra-cellular reactive oxygen species contents, and oxidative DNA damage fre-quency after irradiation. Lin-/Sca-1+ cells were isolated from C3H/HeN mice on days 1 - 400 after 0 - 3 Gy total body irradiation. On days 1 - 7, the number of surviving cells decreased and reached a minimum; however, the number of cells gradually recovered until day 200. Intracellular reactive oxygen species contents significantly increased from day 1 to day 30. In addition, the frequency of oxidative DNA damage tended to increase from day 1 and day 30, and that at day 30 was significantly increased in the 3 Gy group compared with that in the control group. In contrast, decreased cell number, increased intracellular reactive oxygen species content, and decreased oxidative DNA damage frequency were observed on day 400. These results suggested that oxidative DNA damage was involved in intracellular reactive oxygen species generation induced by cell proliferation to compensate for cell death after irradiation.
Effects of Emotional Valence (Positive or Negative Visual Images) and Arousal Levels (High or Low Arousal Levels) on the Useful Field of View  [PDF]
Naoko Masuda
Psychology (PSYCH) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/psych.2015.64045
Abstract: One of two emotional valence (positive or negative) images and two arousal (high or low) images was presented for 500 ms to participants. After the image vanished from the screen, a letter was presented in the central visual field, while a number was also presented in one of the peripheral visual fields (upper right, upper left, bottom right, and bottom left). There were four conditions of degree of eccentricity of the presented number. The participants identified both the letter and number simultaneously. By calculating the correct performance rate of the peripheral identification task, the range of the useful field of view (UFOV) was speculated. Results showed that performance rates of the central and peripheral tasks were worse for the high arousal, negative emotion stimuli compared with the other three conditions. Moreover, performance rates of the peripheral task were better for the positive emotion conditions than those for the negative emotion conditions when the stimulus eccentricities were 3 or 12 degrees. We concluded that the range of the UFOV could be affected by the interaction between the emotional valence and arousal level of visual stimuli. This study was the first report that emotional valence and arousal level interacted each other and did affect our human visual cognition.
Analysis of bacterial growth at various distances from an antimicrobial surface  [PDF]
Shohei Nunose, Rie Iwai, Shujiro Okuda, Yuki Tsuchiya, Hisao Morisaki
Advances in Bioscience and Biotechnology (ABB) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/abb.2013.44074

Antimicrobial materials have been used in various environments. However, the activity of cells at a distance from the antimicrobial materials has not been elucidated. In the present study, the cell growth of Escherichia coli NBRC 3972 was observed at different distances (0 - 300 μm) from the antimicrobial surface under various nutrient concentrations, from full strength nutrient broth (NB) to 1/40 NB. Under higher nutrient concentrations, NB and 1/2 NB, no antimicrobial effect on cell growth was observed at any distance from the surface. Under lower nutrient concentrations, 1/10 NB and 1/40 NB, the growth of cells directly contacting the antimicrobial surface (at 0 μm from the surface) was blocked immediately after inoculation on the surface. However, at distances of 100 - 300 μm from the surface, the cells grew normally for a while, and then stopped the growth; earlier growth discontinuation was observed for cells closer to the surface. It was suggested that the antimicrobial agent (silver ions) is released from the antimicrobial surface into the medium and that the diffusion of the silver ions may influence the lag in the antimicrobial effects observed at distances away from the antimicrobial surface. The present study reveals the possibility that antimicrobial activity in the environments where the antimicrobial material is used depends on the distance from the surface and the surrounding nutrient concentrations.

Evaluation of Oxidative Stress, Antioxidant Power, and Antioxidant Potential of Breastmilk of Breast-Feeding Mothers  [PDF]
Naoko Kuramoto, Mariko Kitagawa
Health (Health) , 2017, DOI: 10.4236/health.2017.98083
Abstract: Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate oxidative stress, antioxidant power, and antioxidant potential of breastmilk of breast-feeding mothers from the early postpartum period to the first 3 months postpartum, and to examine the dynamics and the relationships among them. Method: For 47 pu-erperant women who gave vaginal birth without any pregnancy complications, the oxidative stress levels (d-ROMs levels) and antioxidant power (BAP levels) in the maternal plasma as well as antioxidant potential of breastmilk (BAP levels in breastmilk) were measured 3 times, i.e., in the early puerperium (4 or 5 days after giving birth), one month after giving birth, and 3 months after giving birth. Results: The d-ROMs levels in the maternal plasma were significantly high in the early puerperium (p < 0.001), and decreased gradually in the post-partum period (p < 0.001). On the other hand, BAP levels were significantly low in the early puerperium (p < 0.001), and increased to the almost normal level during one month after giving birth. BAP levels in breastmilk were significantly high in the early puerperium compared with the other periods (p < 0.001), and decreased gradually until 3 months after giving birth (p < 0.001). BAP levels in breastmilk in the early puerperium were higher compared with the maternal BAP levels, and there was a positive correlation between BAP levels in breast-milk and those in the maternal plasma (p < 0.05). Discussion: Regarding the oxidative stress and the antioxidant defense system of breast-feeding mothers, the d-ROMs level was highest and the BAP level was lowest in the early puerperium. The BAP level then showed a clear tendency to recover in the first 3 months after giving birth. Conclusion: When the maternal antioxidant potential remains at a low level after giving birth, careful consideration should be given to the mother’s health and wellbeing because there is a possibility that it might affect the antioxidant potential of breastmilk.
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