Mentor: Dr. Elena Aikawa
Dr. Okui joined Center for Interdisciplinary Cardiovascular Sciences (CICS) in 2017 as a Research Fellow in Dr. Elena Aikawa’s Group, where he works on novel therapeutic targets and mechanisms of cardiovascular calcification, mitochondrial dynamics, and lipid metabolism by performing in vitro and vivo experiments and proteomic/metabolomic analyses. Dr Okui obtained his doctorate, Doctor of Science (D.Sc.), in Department of Integrative Bioscience and Biomedical Engineering at Waseda University where he studied molecular physiology and hematology in Dr. Takashi Kato’s laboratory. After graduation, he joined Kowa Company, Ltd., where he worked on therapeutic targets and candidate compounds for dyslipidemia in Pharmacology Department at Tokyo New Drug Research Laboratories. After joining Dr. Elena Aikawa’s laboratory, he has been investigating carnitine O-octanoyltransferase (CROT), and recently published a paper in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology (ATVB) that demonstrated CROT as a novel contributing factor in vascular calcification via promoting fatty acid metabolism and mitochondrial dysfunction. Now he is excited about the strong potential of CROT inhibition as an anti-fibrocalcific therapy in valvular disease.