Masatoshi Suzuki

Department of Comparative Biosciences
Office: 4124

Masatoshi Suzuki

Titles and Education

  1. Ph.D., 1999, The University of Tokyo, Japan

  2. D.V.M., 1995, The Ministry of Agriculture and Fishery, Japan

  3. B.S., 1995, The University of Tokyo, Japan (Veterinary Medicine)



Application of stem cells to developmental modeling and cell-based therapy for neuromuscular and musculoskeletal disorders

My current research focuses on developing stem cell technology for use in treating and modeling neuromuscular and musculoskeletal diseases. We have engaged in basic and translational studies using human neural progenitor cells, mesenchymal stem cells, and pluripotent stem cells to develop therapeutic strategies for neuromuscular diseases, primarily focusing on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). ALS is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease in which motor neurons of the spinal cord and brain degenerate, causing paralysis and death due to respiratory failure.

On the translational front, my laboratory uses human stem cells for developing therapeutic strategies to treat ALS. Our current idea is to use stem cells to provide growth factor delivery using stem cells to the neuromuscular junction. This approach protects motor neurons by preventing the “dying back” of these cells from the muscle in a rat model of ALS.

Furthermore, our lab recently initiated a new project to establish skeletal muscle progenitor/stem cells derived from human pluripotent sources. Our culture method can produce skeletal muscle progenitor cells from human induced-pluripotent stem cells generated from both healthy donors and patients with neuromuscular disorders. This project will allow us to refine our ex vivo therapeutic approach for ALS and develop in vitro models of neuromuscular diseases.

In addition, our research team develops new imaging approaches for monitoring the location and survival of engrafted stem cells in the central nervous system. In preclinical and clinical trials of stem cell therapy, it is essential to investigate engrafted cell dynamics to understand patient effects.


University of Wisconsin Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine Center



  • Fundamental Principles of Veterinary Anatomy

Recent Publications

  1. Chen G, Abdeen AA, Wang Y, Shahi PK, Robertson S, Xie R, Suzuki M, Pattnaik BR, Saha K, Gong S. A biodegradable nanocapsule delivers a Cas9 ribonucleoprotein complex for in vivo genome editing. Nature Nanotechnology, in press, 2019.
  2. Lynch E, Semrad T, Belsito VS, FitzGibbons C, Reilly M, Hayakawa K, Suzuki MC9ORF72-related cellular pathology in skeletal myocytes derived from ALS-patient induced pluripotent stem cells. Dis Model Mech. 12(8): dmm039552, 2019.
  3. Jiwlawat N, Lynch EM, Napiwocki BN, Stempien A, Ashton RS, Kamp TJ, Crone WC, Suzuki M. Micropatterned substrates with physiological stiffness promote cell maturation and Pompe disease phenotype in human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived skeletal myocytes. Biotechnol Bioeng. 116: 2377-2392, 2019.
  4. Jeffrey J, D’Cunha H, Suzuki M. Blood level of Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP) does not correlate with disease progression in a rat model of familial ALS (SOD1G93A Transgenic). Front Neurol. 9: 954, 2018.     
  5. Jiwlawat N, Lynch E, Jeffrey J, Van Dyke JM, Suzuki M. Current Progress and Challenges for Skeletal Muscle Differentiation from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Using Transgene-Free Approaches. Stem Cells Int, 2018: 6241681, 2018.
  6. Jiwlawat S, Lynch E, Glaser J, Smit-Oistad I, Jeffrey J, Van Dyke JM, Suzuki M. Differentiation and sarcomere formation in skeletal myocytes directly prepared from human induced pluripotent stem cells using a sphere-based culture. Differentiation. 96: 70-81, 2017.
  7. Van Dyke JM, Smit-Oistad IM, Macrander C, Krakora D, Meyer MG, Suzuki M. Macrophage-mediated inflammation and glial response in the skeletal muscle of a rat model of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Exp Neurol. 277: 275-82, 2016.
  8. Lewis CM, Graves SA, Hernandez R, Valdovinos HF, Barnhart TE, Cai W, Meyerand ME, Nickles RJ, Suzuki M. 52Mn production for PET/MRI tracking of human stem cells expressing divalent metal transporter 1 (DMT1). Theranostics. 5: 227-39, 2015.
  9. Hosoyama T, McGivern JM, Van Dyke J, Ebert A, Suzuki M. Derivation of myogenic progenitors directly from human pluripotent stem cells using a sphere-based culture. Stem Cells Translational Medicine, 3: 564-74, 2014.
  10. Krakora D, Mulclore P, Meyer M, Lewis C, Bernau K, Gowing G, Zimprich C, Aebischer P, Svendsen CN, Suzuki M.  Synergistic effects of GDNF and VEGF on lifespan and disease progression in a familial ALS rat model.  Molecular Therapy, 21:1602-10, 2013.
  11. Hosoyama T, Meyer M, Krakora D, Suzuki M. Isolation and in vitro propagation of human skeletal muscle progenitor cells from fetal muscle. Cell Biology International, 37: 191-6, 2013.
  12. Li R, Strykowski R, Meyer M, Mulcrone P, Krakora D, Suzuki M. Male-specific differences in proliferation, neurogenesis, and sensitivity to oxidative stress in neural progenitor cells derived from a rat model of ALS. PLoS ONE, 7: e48581, 2012.
  13. Hayes-Punzo A, Mulcrone P, Meyer M, McHugh J, Svendsen CN, Suzuki M. Gonadectomy and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) do not modulate disease progression in the G93A mutant SOD1 rat model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, 13: 311-14, 2012.