Zeynep BAL Zeynep BAL

Zeynep BAL


I came to Japan as a MEXT research scholar by Japanese embassy recommendation in April 2016.
 For a year I researched at Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, Department of Organ 
Regulation Medicine Orthopaedic Surgery and between 2017-2021 I did my PhD in the same department. 
Since 2021 April I am continuing my research at Takakura Lab



I think most of the abnormalities occurring in living things are related with the vascular anomalies at macro level. Thus, I am researching on the vascular changes or abnormalities that may occur in bone and cartilage related diseases.




  •  Korkusuz F, Dede EC, Bal Z, Gizer M, Ishiguro H, Kaito T, Sağlam N, Korkusuz P. Substrates that replace bone grafts and their action mechanisms. TOTBID Dergisi. 16: 485-492 (2017) In Turkish
  • Kushioka J, Kaito T, Chijimatsu R, Okada R, Ishiguro H, Bal Z, Kodama J, Takenaka S, Makino T, Sakai Y, Yoshikawa H. A novel and efficient method for culturing mouse nucleus pulposus cells. The Spine Journal,  19(9):1573-1583, 2019
  • Ishiguro H, Kaito T, Hashimoto K, Kushioka J, Okada R, Tsukazaki H, Kodama J, Bal Z, Ukon Y, Takenaka S, Makino T, Sakai Y, Yoshikawa H. Administration of ONO-2506 suppresses neuropathic pain after spinal cord injury by inhibition of astrocytic activation. Spine Journal.  19(8):1434-1442  (2019)
  • Bal Z, Kaito T, Korkusuz F, Yoshikawa H. Bone Regeneration with hydroxyapatite-based materi- als. Emergent Materials. 3: 521-544 (2020) 
  • Bal Z, Kushioka J, Kodama J, Kaito T, Yoshikawa H, Korkusuz P, Korkusuz F. BMP and TGFβ use and release in bone regeneration. Turkish Journal of Medical Science. 50 (SI-2): 1707-1722 (2020) 
  • Okada R, Kaito T, Ishiguro H, Kushioka J, Otsuru S, Kanayama S, Bal Z, Kitaguchi K, Hashimoto K, Makino T, Takenaka S, Sakai Y, Yoshikawa H. Assessment of effects of rhBMP-2 on interbody fusion with a novel rat model. The Spine Journal 20(5): 821-829 (2020) 

  • Kushioka J, Kaito T, Chijimatsu R, Okada R, Ishiguro H, Bal Z, Kodama J, Yano F, Saito T, Chung U, Tanaka S, Yoshikawa H. The small compound, TD-198946, protects against intervertebral degeneration by enhancing glycosaminoglycan synthesis in nucleus pulpous cells. Scientific Reports. 10, 14190 (2020)
  • Kushioka J, Kaito T, Okada R, Ishiguro H, Bal Z, Chijimatsu R, Pye M, Narimatsu M, Wrana JL, Inoue Y, Ninomiya H, Yamamoto S, Saitou T, Yoshikawa H, Imamura T. A novel negative regulatory mechanism of Smurf2 in BMP/Smad signalling in bone. Bone Research. 8 (41) (2020) 
  • Bal Z, Korkusuz F, Ishiguro H, Okada R, Kushioka J, Chijimatsu R, Kodama J, Tateiwa D, Ukon Y, Nakagawa S, Ciftci Dede E, Gizer M, Yoshikawa H, Kaito T. A novel nano-hydroxyapatite/synthetic polymer/bone morphogenetic protein composite for efficient bone regeneration. The Spine Journal. 21(5): 865-873 (2021)
  • Kodama J, Chen H, Zhou T, Kushioka J, Okada R, Tsukazaki H, Tateiwa D, Nakagawa S, Ukon T, Bal Z, Tian H, Zhao J, Kaito T. Antibacterial efficacy of quaternized chitosan coating on 3D printed titanium cage in rat intervertebral disc space. The Spine Journal. 21 (7): 1217-1228 (2021)
  • Okada R, Yamato K, Kawakami M, Kodama J, Kushioka J, Tateiwa D, Ukon Y, Bal Z, Ishimoto T, Nakano T, Yoshikawa H, Kaito T. Low magnetic field promotes recombinant human BMP-2-induced bone formation and influences orientation of trabecular and bone marrow-derived stromal cells. Bone Reports. 14, 100757. (2021)
  • Tateiwa D, Nakagawa S, Tsukazaki H, Okada R, Kodama J, Kushioka J, Bal Z, Ukon Y, Hirai H, Kaito T. Scientific Reports. 11, 16924. (2021)
  • Nakagawa S, Okada R, Kushioka J, Kodama J, Tsukazaki H, Bal Z, Tateiwa D, Ukon Y, Hirai H, Makino T, Takenaka S, Okada S, Kaito T. Effects of rhBMP-2 loaded hydroxyapatite granules/beta-tricalcium phosphate hydrogel (HA/β-TCP hydrogel) composite on a rat model of coccygeal intervertebral fusion. Scientific Reports. (2021)
  • Tateiwa D, Kaito T, Hashimoto K, Okada R, Kodama J, Kushioka J, Bal Z, Tsukazaki H, Nakagawa S, Ukon Y, Hirai H, Tian H, Alferiev I, Chorny M, Otsuru S, Okada S, Iwamoto M. Selective retinoic acid receptor ɣ antagonist 7C is a potent enhancer of BMP-induced ectopic endochondral bone formation. Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology. 10: 802699 (2022)
  • Ukon Y, Nishida M, Yamamori N, Takeyama K, Sakamoto K, Takenaka S, Makino T, Fujimori T, Sakai Y, Kanie Y, Kodama J, Bal Z, Tateiwa D, Nakagawa S, Hirai H, Okada S, Kaito T. Prostaglandin EP4 selective agonist AKDS001 enhances new bone formation by minimodeling in a rat heterotropic xenograft model of human bone. Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology. 10: 845716 (2022)
  • Nakagawa S, Okada R, Kushioka J, Kodama J, Tsukazaki H, Bal Z, Tateiwa D, Ukon Y, Hirai H, Makino T, Takenaka S, Okada S, Kaito T. Effects of rhBMP-2-loaded hydroxyapatite granules / beta-tricalcium phosphate hydrogel (HA/β-TCP/hydrogel) composite on a rat model of caudal intervertebral fusion. Scientific Reports 12 : 7906 (2022)



  • Orthoregeneration Award (Best Regeneration Study) by ON/EORS (Orthoregeneration Network / European Orthopaedic Research Society), 26th European Orthopaedic Research Society Annual Meeting, Galway, Ireland. (25-28.09.2018)


I am in love with cells since I know myself. I remember when I was a child, answering  people as “A scientist!!” when they asked me what I would love to be when I grow up .While doing double PhD in my country, many times I though “signal transduction feels like real science!”. Thus, I can say my hobby is also “signal transduction and science”.



Please do not hesitate to get in contact. If you are not comfortable with Japanese, you can also get in touch in English, Turkish or German. However since I have not been using German for more than 6 years by now, I may answer you in English if I am in hurry.