9/27, LSBM Monday Seminar Series #11

Presenter: Katsuhito Fujiu (University of Tokyo, Graduate School of Medicine)

Title: Inter-organ communications through immune and neural networks maintain and disrupt dynamic homeostasis
Date: September 27th (Mon.) 12PM~




Blood circulation is dynamically controlled by many organs and maintains homeostasis. If the circulatory regulation is diminished, a complex and systemic disease called heart failure will likely develop. As of now, heart failure is a non-curable disease, although several medications and devices exist. Therefore, the identification of new physiological or pathological mechanisms of circulatory regulation is needed.

First, I found that a small population of heart cells, heart macrophages, are required for dynamic cardiac homeostasis [1,2]. When we depleted the population in mice, heart failure death and sudden cardiac death surprisingly occurred.

Second, I investigated how cardiac macrophages were regulated. I identified that a novel heart-brain-kidney communication was required to activate tissue macrophages in response to heart overburden [1]. Also, I found that macrophage/monocyte-specific long non-coding RNA was essential for the protective role of macrophages by keeping cell metabolism on fatty-acid oxidation [3].

Finally, I discussed a recent discovery that another novel inter-organ communication through an immune neural network could explain the incurability of heart failure [4].




[1] Fujiu K et al., Nature Medicine, 23(5):611–622, 2017

[2] Sugita J, Fujiu K et al., Nature Communications, 12:1910, 2021

[3] Nakayama Y, Fujiu K et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 117(25):14365–14375, 2020

[4] Nakayama Y, Fujiu K et al., in revision




Katsuhito Fujiu

M.D. and Ph.D.


Associate Professor, University of Tokyo, 2018–present

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, The University of Tokyo Hospital