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 Marine Biomedicine and Environmental Sciences | Faculty | Satomi Kohno, Ph.D.

Satomi Kohno, Ph.D.

Research Interest:
Understanding the molecular mechanism of endogenous and/or exogenous endocrine factors on the steroid hormone signaling system in variety of vertebrates is the major task of my research. Actual on-going experiment is separated into three parts:

1. Effects of steroid hormones or environmental contaminants on the sex determination in American alligator;
2. Environmental impacts on the sexual development, endocrine system and immune system in American alligator;
3. Comparative and molecular study of steroid hormone receptors in vertebrates.

Estrogens and other steroid hormones play essential roles on the development and homeostasis in vertebrates. The environmental contamination of chemicals widely spread, and it has been a global concern. Some of environmental contaminants have the potential to alter the endogenous endocrine system, especially steroid hormone signals. To understand the endocrine alteration and to eliminate it, the mechanisms of the alterations need to be investigated. American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, is one of the top predators in the wild, and the contaminants would be concentrated in their body by the bioaccumulation. Crocodilians including alligator are using the unique sex determination system called temperature-dependent sex determination. This sex determination is sensitive to the estrogens or estrogenic compounds, and it can be overwritten by them. Therefore, American alligator could be a great and unique model animal to investigate the influences of the environmental contaminants.
In addition, the functional investigation of the steroid hormone receptors needs to be done in the variety of vertebrates for understanding the impacts of widely spread contaminants. Moreover, since we have recently joined the department of Obstetrics & Gynecology in MUSC, there is more possibility to collaborate and investigate the environmental impacts on the human reproductive health.

Selected Publications:

1. Zhu J, Braun EL, Kohno S, Antenos M, Xu EY, Cook RW, Lin SJ, Moore BC, Guillette LJ, Jr., Jardetzky TS, Woodruff TK 2010 Phylogenomic analyses reveal the evolutionary origin of the inhibin alpha-subunit, a unique TGF-beta superfamily antagonist. PLoS One 5:e9457

2. Moore BC, Milnes MR, Kohno S, Katsu Y, Iguchi T, Guillette LJ, Jr. 2010 Influences of sex, incubation temperature, and environmental quality on gonadal estrogen and androgen receptor messenger RNA expression in juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Biol Reprod 82:194-201

3. Moore BC, Kohno S, Cook RW, Alvers AL, Hamlin HJ, Woodruff TK, Guillette LJ 2010 Altered sex hormone concentrations and gonadal mRNA expression levels of activin signaling factors in hatchling alligators from a contaminated Florida lake. J Exp Zool A Ecol Genet Physiol 313:218-230

4. Kohno S, Katsu Y, Urushitani H, Ohta Y, Iguchi T, Guillette LJ, Jr. 2010 Potential contributions of heat shock proteins to temperature-dependent sex determination in the American alligator. Sex Dev 4:73-87

5. Katsu Y, Kohno S, Narita H, Urushitani H, Yamane K, Hara A, Clauss TM, Walsh MT, Miyagawa S, Guillette LJ, Jr., Iguchi T 2010 Cloning and functional characterization of Chondrichthyes, cloudy catshark, Scyliorhinus torazame and whale shark, Rhincodon typus estrogen receptors. Gen Comp Endocrionl 168:496-504

Satomi Kohno, Ph.D.

Satomi Kohno, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Obstetrics & Gynecology

Ph.D., Yokohama City University, Japan

Dr. Kohno's Contact Information