|Budget Amount *help
¥4,290,000 (Direct Cost: ¥3,300,000、Indirect Cost: ¥990,000)
Fiscal Year 2012: ¥1,560,000 (Direct Cost: ¥1,200,000、Indirect Cost: ¥360,000)
Fiscal Year 2011: ¥2,730,000 (Direct Cost: ¥2,100,000、Indirect Cost: ¥630,000)
In the gastrointestinal tract, interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) act as primary pacemaker cells, and play a fundamental role in the transmission of signals from enteric neurons to smooth muscle cells. In the urinary tract, including bladder, ICCs, which are referred to as interstitial cells (IC), ICC-like cells, or myofibroblasts, have also been identified by their morphological characteristics, but represent variability among tissues which may account for individual characteristics of organ. ICCs express the proto-oncogene c-kit, and signaling via the receptor kinase gene product, KIT, which is used as an identification marker of ICCs. Recent reports have suggested that KIT is not only a detection marker of these cells, but also may play a crucial role in the control of bladder function. Identifying the functions of ICCs and/or KIT may be a shortcut to clarify the pathophysiology of overactive bladder (OAB) and detrusor overactivity. Thus, in this study, we summarize the distribution and function of KIT-positive ICC and KIT in the bladder as well as the association between KIT-positive ICCs or KIT and OAB, and discuss the possible therapeutic target of KIT for OAB in the future. Finally, we demonstrated the usefulness of a possible objective biomarker for diagnosis and treatment efficacy, stem cell factor (SCF), which is a natural ligand for KIT.