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Special Issue "Aquaporin"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2016).

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Kenichi Ishibashi Website E-Mail
Department of Medical Physiology, School of Pharmacy, Meiji Pharmaceutical University, 2-522-1 Noshio, Kiyose, Tokyo, 204–8588, Japan
Phone: +81-42-495-8502
Fax: +81-42-495-8502
Interests: transporter; channel; electrolyte homeostasis; nephrology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Aquaporin (AQP) has set a stage for the research on water metabolism in living organisms. Since water is vital for life, AQPs are ubiquitous with a highly conserved pore structure, a set of asparagine–proline–alanine (NPA) boxes, which have been revealed by extensive genome projects. Initially, AQPs were expected to shed light on the understanding and treatment of human diseases related to edema and dehydration. However, mild phenotypes in AQP null mice suggest AQPs may be important for stressed conditions, such as disease states, which invites knowledge on AQPs in lower animals, even plants and bacteria, for medical applications, as AQPs are not limited to water channels, permeating a variety of small molecules, and even metals and gases. This Special Issue of the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, “Aquaporins for Medicine” will focus on the potential applications of AQP studies, from wide variety of living things, on medicine (diagnosing and curing diseases).

Authors are invited to submit manuscripts that examine AQPs to understand biological problems, simulating disease states and leading to conceivable or even imaginable applications for medical issues, including drug therapies.

Prof. Dr. Kenichi Ishibashi
Guest Editor

Keywords

  • aquaporin
  • osmoregulation
  • water metabolism
  • glycerol channel
  • fat metabolism
  • cell volume regulation
  • cell movement
  • evolution and adaptation
  • proteomics
  • therapeutic application
  • deficient phenotype
  • structure-function correlation
  • small molecule channel

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Open AccessArticle
Aquaporin-Mediated Water and Hydrogen Peroxide Transport Is Involved in Normal Human Spermatozoa Functioning
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(1), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18010066 - 30 Dec 2016
Cited by 9
Abstract
Different aquaporins (AQPs) are expressed in human sperm cells and with a different localization. Their function has been related to cell volume control in response to the osmotic changes encountered passing from the epididymal fluid to the cervical mucus or involved in the [...] Read more.
Different aquaporins (AQPs) are expressed in human sperm cells and with a different localization. Their function has been related to cell volume control in response to the osmotic changes encountered passing from the epididymal fluid to the cervical mucus or involved in the end stage of cytoplasm removal during sperm maturation. Recently, AQPs have also shown hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) permeability properties. Here, we investigate the expression, localization and functioning of AQPs in human sperm cells with particular attention to their role as peroxiporins in reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging in both normospermic and sub-fertile human subjects. Western blotting and immunocytochemistry were used to confirm and clarify the AQPs expression and localization. Water and H2O2 permeability was tested by stopped flow light scattering method and by the CM-H2DCFDA (5-(and-6)-chloromethyl-2′,7′-dichlorodihydro-fluorescein diacetate, acetyl ester) H2O2 fluorescence probe, respectively. AQP3, -7, -8, and -11 proteins were found in human sperm cells and localized in the head (AQP7), in the middle piece (AQP8) and in the tail (AQP3 and -11) in both the plasma membrane and in intracellular structures. Sperm cells showed water and H2O2 permeability which was reversibly inhibited by H2O2, heat stress and the AQP inhibitor HgCl2. Reduced functionality was observed in patients with compromised basal semen parameters. Present findings suggest that AQPs are involved in both volume regulation and ROS elimination. The relationship between sperm number and motility and AQP functioning was also demonstrated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Rat Aquaporin-5 Is pH-Gated Induced by Phosphorylation and Is Implicated in Oxidative Stress
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 2090; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17122090 - 13 Dec 2016
Cited by 20
Abstract
Aquaporin-5 (AQP5) is a membrane water channel widely distributed in human tissues that was found up-regulated in different tumors and considered implicated in carcinogenesis in different organs and systems. Despite its wide distribution pattern and physiological importance, AQP5 short-term regulation was not reported [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-5 (AQP5) is a membrane water channel widely distributed in human tissues that was found up-regulated in different tumors and considered implicated in carcinogenesis in different organs and systems. Despite its wide distribution pattern and physiological importance, AQP5 short-term regulation was not reported and mechanisms underlying its involvement in cancer are not well defined. In this work, we expressed rat AQP5 in yeast and investigated mechanisms of gating, as well as AQP5’s ability to facilitate H2O2 plasma membrane diffusion. We found that AQP5 can be gated by extracellular pH in a phosphorylation-dependent manner, with higher activity at physiological pH 7.4. Moreover, similar to other mammalian AQPs, AQP5 is able to increase extracellular H2O2 influx and to affect oxidative cell response with dual effects: whereas in acute oxidative stress conditions AQP5 induces an initial higher sensitivity, in chronic stress AQP5 expressing cells show improved cell survival and resistance. Our findings support the involvement of AQP5 in oxidative stress and suggest AQP5 modulation by phosphorylation as a novel tool for therapeutics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Enhanced Autophagy in Polycystic Kidneys of AQP11 Null Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 1993; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17121993 - 30 Nov 2016
Cited by 5
Abstract
Aquaporin-11 (AQP11) is an intracellular water channel expressed at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of the proximal tubule. Its gene disruption in mice leads to intracellular vacuole formation at one week and the subsequent development of polycystic kidneys by three weeks. As the damaged [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-11 (AQP11) is an intracellular water channel expressed at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of the proximal tubule. Its gene disruption in mice leads to intracellular vacuole formation at one week and the subsequent development of polycystic kidneys by three weeks. As the damaged proximal tubular cells with intracellular vacuoles form cysts later, we postulated that autophagy may play a role in the cyst formation and examined autophagy activity before and after cyst development in AQP11(−/−) kidneys. PCR analysis showed the increased expression of the transcript encoding LC3 (Map1lc3b) as well as other autophagy-related genes in AQP11(−/−) mice. Using green fluorescent protein (GFP)-LC3 transgenic mice and AQP11(−/−) mice, we found that the number of GFP-LC3–positive puncta was increased in the proximal tubule of AQP11(−/−) mice before the cyst formation. Interestingly, they were also observed in the cyst-lining epithelial cell. Further PCR analyses revealed the enhanced expression of apoptosis-related and ER stress–related caspase genes before and after the cyst formation, which may cause the enhanced autophagy. These results suggest the involvement of autophagy in the development and maintenance of kidney cysts in AQP11(−/−) mice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Age-Related Modulations of AQP4 and Caveolin-1 in the Hippocampus Predispose the Toxic Effect of Phoneutria nigriventer Spider Venom
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(11), 1462; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17111462 - 23 Nov 2016
Cited by 1
Abstract
We have previously demonstrated that Phoneutria nigriventer venom (PNV) causes blood–brain barrier (BBB) breakdown, swelling of astrocytes end-feet and fluid permeation into brain interstitium in rats. Caveolae and water channels respond to BBB alterations by co-participation in shear stress response and edema formation/resolution. [...] Read more.
We have previously demonstrated that Phoneutria nigriventer venom (PNV) causes blood–brain barrier (BBB) breakdown, swelling of astrocytes end-feet and fluid permeation into brain interstitium in rats. Caveolae and water channels respond to BBB alterations by co-participation in shear stress response and edema formation/resolution. Herein, we showed post-natal developmental-related changes of two BBB-associated transporter proteins: the endothelial caveolin-1 (Cav-1), the major scaffolding protein from caveolae frame, and the astroglial aquaporin-4 (AQP4), the main water channel protein expressed in astrocytic peri-vascular end-feet processes, in the hippocampus of rats intraperitoneally-administered PNV. Western blotting protein levels; immunohistochemistry (IHC) protein distribution in CA1, CA2, and CA3 subfields; and gene expression by Real Time-Polymerase Chain Reaction (qPCR) were assessed in post-natal Day 14 (P14) and 8–10-week-old rats over critical periods of envenomation. The intensity and duration of the toxic manifestations indicate P14 neonate rats more vulnerable to PNV than adults. Histologically, the capillaries of P14 and 8–10-week-old rats treated with PNV showed perivascular edema, while controls did not. The intensity of the toxic manifestations in P14 decreases temporally (2 > 5 > 24 h), while inversely the expression of AQP4 and Cav-1 peaked at 24 h when clinically PNV-treated animals do not differ from saline controls. IHC of AQP4 revealed that hippocampal CA1 showed the least expression at 2 h when toxic manifestation was maximal. Subfield IHC quantification revealed that in P14 rats Cav-1 peaked at 24 h when toxic manifestations were absent, whereas in 8–10-week-old rats Cav-1 peaked at 2 h when toxic signs were highest, and progressively attenuated such increases until 24 h, remaining though significantly above baseline. Considering astrocyte-endothelial physical and functional interactions, we hypothesize that age-related modulations of AQP4 and Cav-1 might be linked both to changes in functional properties of astrocytes during post-natal development and in the BBB breakdown induced by the venom of P. nigriventer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
AQP2 Plasma Membrane Diffusion Is Altered by the Degree of AQP2-S256 Phosphorylation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(11), 1804; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17111804 - 28 Oct 2016
Cited by 11
Abstract
Fine tuning of urine concentration occurs in the renal collecting duct in response to circulating levels of arginine vasopressin (AVP). AVP stimulates intracellular cAMP production, which mediates exocytosis of sub-apical vesicles containing the water channel aquaporin-2 (AQP2). Protein Kinase A (PKA) phosphorylates AQP2 [...] Read more.
Fine tuning of urine concentration occurs in the renal collecting duct in response to circulating levels of arginine vasopressin (AVP). AVP stimulates intracellular cAMP production, which mediates exocytosis of sub-apical vesicles containing the water channel aquaporin-2 (AQP2). Protein Kinase A (PKA) phosphorylates AQP2 on serine-256 (S256), which triggers plasma membrane accumulation of AQP2. This mediates insertion of AQP2 into the apical plasma membrane, increasing water permeability of the collecting duct. AQP2 is a homo-tetramer. When S256 on all four monomers is changed to the phosphomimic aspartic acid (S256D), AQP2-S256D localizes to the plasma membrane and internalization is decreased. In contrast, when S256 is mutated to alanine (S256A) to mimic non-phosphorylated AQP2, AQP2-S256A localizes to intracellular vesicles as well as the plasma membrane, with increased internalization from the plasma membrane. S256 phosphorylation is not necessary for exocytosis and dephosphorylation is not necessary for endocytosis, however, the degree of S256 phosphorylation is hypothesized to regulate the kinetics of AQP2 endocytosis and thus, retention time in the plasma membrane. Using k-space Image Correlation Spectroscopy (kICS), we determined how the number of phosphorylated to non-phosphorylated S256 monomers in the AQP2 tetramer affects diffusion speed of AQP2 in the plasma membrane. When all four monomers mimicked constitutive phosphorylation (AQP2-S256D), diffusion was faster than when all four were non-phosphorylated (AQP2-S256A). AQP2-WT diffused at a speed similar to that of AQP2-S256D. When an average of two or three monomers in the tetramer were constitutively phosphorylated, the average diffusion coefficients were not significantly different to that of AQP2-S256D. However, when only one monomer was phosphorylated, diffusion was slower and similar to AQP2-S256A. Thus, AQP2 with two to four phosphorylated monomers has faster plasma membrane kinetics, than the tetramer which contains just one or no phosphorylated monomers. This difference in diffusion rate may reflect behavior of AQP2 tetramers destined for either plasma membrane retention or endocytosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Involvement of JNK/NFκB Signaling Pathways in the Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Modulation of Aquaglyceroporin Expression in 3T3-L1 Cells Differentiated into Adipocytes
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(10), 1742; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17101742 - 18 Oct 2016
Cited by 4
Abstract
Aquaglyceroporins, belonging to the family of aquaporins (AQPs), are integral plasma membrane proteins permeable to water and glycerol that have emerged as key players in obesity. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression profile of AQPs in undifferentiated and differentiated [...] Read more.
Aquaglyceroporins, belonging to the family of aquaporins (AQPs), are integral plasma membrane proteins permeable to water and glycerol that have emerged as key players in obesity. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression profile of AQPs in undifferentiated and differentiated 3T3-L1 cells and to investigate the changes in expression of aquaglyceroporins in 3T3-L1 cells differentiated into adipocytes and subjected to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) mimicking inflammation occurring during obesity. Furthermore, the study aimed at identifying the signaling cascade involved in the regulation of aquaglyceroporins expression upon LPS stimulation. 3T3-L1 cells were grown as undifferentiated cells (UDC; preadipocytes) or cells differentiated into adipocytes (DC, adipocytes). DC were incubated in the presence or absence of LPS with or without inhibitors of various protein kinases. AQPs mRNA expression levels were measured by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). AQP1, AQP2, AQP3, AQP9 and AQP11 mRNA were expressed in both UDC and DC, whereas AQP4, AQP7 and AQP8 mRNA were expressed only in DC. In DC, LPS up-regulated AQP3 mRNA levels (p < 0.05) compared to control; these effects were inhibited by CLI095, SP600125 and BAY11-7082 (p < 0.05). LPS decreased both AQP7 and AQP11 mRNA levels (p < 0.01) in DC as compared to control; this decrease was inhibited by CLI095 and BAY11-7082 (p < 0.05) and additionally by SP00125 for AQP7 (p < 0.05). SB203580 had no effect on LPS-induced AQP3, AQP7 and AQP11 mRNA levels modulations. In conclusion, our results clearly show that many AQPs are expressed in murine 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Moreover, in DCs, LPS led to decreased AQP7 and AQP11 mRNA levels but to increased AQP3 mRNA levels, resulting from the Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4)-induced activation of JNK and/or NFκB pathway. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessCommunication
Disruption of Membranes of Extracellular Vesicles Is Necessary for ELISA Determination of Urine AQP2: Proof of Disruption and Epitopes of AQP2 Antibodies
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(10), 1634; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17101634 - 26 Sep 2016
Cited by 4
Abstract
Aquaporin-2 (AQP2) is present in urine extracellular vesicles (EVs) and is a useful biomarker for water balance disorders. We previously found that pre-treatment of urine with alkali/detergent or storage at −25 °C is required for enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) measurement. We speculated that [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-2 (AQP2) is present in urine extracellular vesicles (EVs) and is a useful biomarker for water balance disorders. We previously found that pre-treatment of urine with alkali/detergent or storage at −25 °C is required for enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) measurement. We speculated that disruptions of EVs membranes are necessary to allow for the direct contact of antibodies with their epitopes. Human urine EVs were prepared using an ultracentrifugation method. Urine EV samples were stored at different temperatures for a week. Electron microscopy showed abundant EVs with diameters of 20–100 nm, consistent with those of exosomes, in normal urine, whereas samples from alkali/detergent pre-treated urine showed fewer EVs with large swollen shapes and frequent membrane disruptions. The abundance and structures of EVs were maintained during storage at −80 °C, but were severely damaged at −25 °C. Binding and competitive inhibition assays showed that epitopes of monoclonal antibody and polyclonal antibody were the hydrophilic Loop D and C-terminus of AQP2, respectively, both of which are present on the inner surface of EVs. Thus, urine storage at −25 °C or pre-treatment with alkali/detergent disrupt EVs membranes and allow AQP2 antibodies to bind to their epitopes located inside EVs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Efficacy of Polyvalent Human Immunoglobulins in an Animal Model of Neuromyelitis Optica Evoked by Intrathecal Anti-Aquaporin 4 Antibodies
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1407; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17091407 - 26 Aug 2016
Cited by 3
Abstract
Neuromyelitis Optica Spectrum Disorders (NMOSD) are associated with autoantibodies (ABs) targeting the astrocytic aquaporin-4 water channels (AQP4-ABs). These ABs have a direct pathogenic role by initiating a variety of immunological and inflammatory processes in the course of disease. In a recently-established animal model, [...] Read more.
Neuromyelitis Optica Spectrum Disorders (NMOSD) are associated with autoantibodies (ABs) targeting the astrocytic aquaporin-4 water channels (AQP4-ABs). These ABs have a direct pathogenic role by initiating a variety of immunological and inflammatory processes in the course of disease. In a recently-established animal model, chronic intrathecal passive-transfer of immunoglobulin G from NMOSD patients (NMO-IgG), or of recombinant human AQP4-ABs (rAB-AQP4), provided evidence for complementary and immune-cell independent effects of AQP4-ABs. Utilizing this animal model, we here tested the effects of systemically and intrathecally applied pooled human immunoglobulins (IVIg) using a preventive and a therapeutic paradigm. In NMO-IgG animals, prophylactic application of systemic IVIg led to a reduced median disease score of 2.4 on a 0–10 scale, in comparison to 4.1 with sham treatment. Therapeutic IVIg, applied systemically after the 10th intrathecal NMO-IgG injection, significantly reduced the disease score by 0.8. Intrathecal IVIg application induced a beneficial effect in animals with NMO-IgG (median score IVIg 1.6 vs. sham 3.7) or with rAB-AQP4 (median score IVIg 2.0 vs. sham 3.7). We here provide evidence that treatment with IVIg ameliorates disease symptoms in this passive-transfer model, in analogy to former studies investigating passive-transfer animal models of other antibody-mediated disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
The Effects of Female Sexual Hormones on the Expression of Aquaporin 5 in the Late-Pregnant Rat Uterus
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1300; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081300 - 22 Aug 2016
Cited by 5
Abstract
Thirteen mammalian aquaporin (AQP) water channels are known, and few of them play a role in the mammalian reproductive system. In our earlier study, the predominance of AQP5 in the late-pregnant rat uterus was proven. Our current aim was to investigate the effect [...] Read more.
Thirteen mammalian aquaporin (AQP) water channels are known, and few of them play a role in the mammalian reproductive system. In our earlier study, the predominance of AQP5 in the late-pregnant rat uterus was proven. Our current aim was to investigate the effect of estrogen- and gestagen-related compounds on the expression of the AQP5 channel in the late-pregnant rat uterus. Furthermore, we examined the effect of hormonally-induced preterm delivery on the expression of AQP5 in the uterus. We treated pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats subcutaneously with 17β-estradiol, clomiphene citrate, tamoxifen citrate, progesterone, levonorgestrel, and medroxyprogesterone acetate. Preterm delivery was induced by subcutaneous mifepristone and intravaginal prostaglandin E2. Reverse-transcriptase PCR and Western blot techniques were used for the detection of the changes in AQP5 mRNA and protein expressions. The amount of AQP5 significantly increased after progesterone and progesterone analogs treatment on 18 and 22 days of pregnancy. The 17β-estradiol and estrogen receptor agonists did not influence the AQP5 mRNA level; however, estradiol induced a significant increase in the AQP5 protein level on the investigated days of gestation. Tamoxifen increased the AQP5 protein expression on day 18, while clomiphene citrate was ineffective. The hormonally-induced preterm birth significantly decreased the AQP5 level similarly to the day of delivery. We proved that AQP5 expression is influenced by both estrogen and progesterone in the late-pregnant rat uterus. The influence of progesterone on AQP5 expression is more predominant as compared with estrogen. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Is Upregulation of Aquaporin 4-M1 Isoform Responsible for the Loss of Typical Orthogonal Arrays of Particles in Astrocytomas?
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1230; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081230 - 29 Jul 2016
Cited by 3
Abstract
The astrocytic endfoot membranes of the healthy blood-brain barrier—contacting the capillary—are covered with a large number of the water channel aquaporin 4 (AQP4). They form orthogonal arrays of particles (OAPs), which consist of AQP4 isoform M1 and M23. Under pathologic conditions, AQP4 is [...] Read more.
The astrocytic endfoot membranes of the healthy blood-brain barrier—contacting the capillary—are covered with a large number of the water channel aquaporin 4 (AQP4). They form orthogonal arrays of particles (OAPs), which consist of AQP4 isoform M1 and M23. Under pathologic conditions, AQP4 is distributed over the whole cell and no or only small OAPs are found. From cell culture experiments, it is known that cells transfected only with AQP4-M1 do not form OAPs or only small ones. We hypothesized that in astrocytomas the situation may be comparable to the in vitro experiments expecting an upregulation of AQP4-M1. Quantitative Real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) of different graded astrocytomas revealed an upregulation of both isoforms AQP4 M1 and M23 in all astrocytomas investigated. In freeze fracture replicas of low-grade malignancy astrocytomas, more OAPs than in high-grade malignancy astrocytomas were found. In vitro, cultured glioma cells did not express AQP4, whereas healthy astrocytes revealed a slight upregulation of both isoforms and only a few OAPs in freeze fracture analysis. Taken together, we found a correlation between the decrease of OAPs and increasing grade of malignancy of astrocytomas but this was not consistent with an upregulation of AQP4-M1 in relation to AQP4 M23. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Comparative Analysis for the Presence of IgG Anti-Aquaporin-1 in Patients with NMO-Spectrum Disorders
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1195; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081195 - 23 Jul 2016
Cited by 4
Abstract
Detection of IgG anti-Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) in serum of patients with Neuromyelitis optica syndrome disorders (NMOSD) has improved diagnosis of these processes and differentiation from Multiple sclerosis (MS). Recent findings also claim that a subgroup of patients with NMOSD, serum negative for IgG-anti-AQP4, present [...] Read more.
Detection of IgG anti-Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) in serum of patients with Neuromyelitis optica syndrome disorders (NMOSD) has improved diagnosis of these processes and differentiation from Multiple sclerosis (MS). Recent findings also claim that a subgroup of patients with NMOSD, serum negative for IgG-anti-AQP4, present antibodies anti-AQP1 instead. Explore the presence of IgG-anti-AQP1 using a previously developed cell-based assay (CBA) highly sensitive to IgG-anti-AQP4. Serum of 205 patients diagnosed as NMOSD (8), multiple sclerosis (94), optic neuritis (39), idiopathic myelitis (29), other idiopathic demyelinating disorders of the central nervous system (9), other neurological diseases (18) and healthy controls (8), were used in a CBA over fixed HEK cells transfected with hAQP1-EGFP or hM23-AQP4-EGFP, treated with Triton X-100 and untreated. ELISA was also performed. Analysis of serum with our CBA indicated absence of anti-AQP1 antibodies, whereas in cells pretreated with detergent, noisy signal made reliable detection impossible. ELISA showed positive results in few serums. The low number of NMOSD serums included in our study reduces its power to conclude the specificity of AQP1 antibodies as new biomarkers of NMOSD. Our study does not sustain detection of anti-AQP1 in serum of NMOSD patients but further experiments are expected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Prolonged Starvation Causes Up-Regulation of AQP1 in Adipose Tissue Capillaries of AQP7 Knock-Out Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1101; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071101 - 22 Jul 2016
Cited by 4
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) are membrane proteins involved in the regulation of cellular transport and the balance of water and glycerol and cell volume in the white adipose tissue (WAT). In our previous study, we found the co-expression of the AQP1 water channel and AQP7 [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) are membrane proteins involved in the regulation of cellular transport and the balance of water and glycerol and cell volume in the white adipose tissue (WAT). In our previous study, we found the co-expression of the AQP1 water channel and AQP7 in the mouse WAT. In our present study, we aimed to find out whether prolonged starvation influences the AQP1 expression of AQP7 knock-out mice (AQP7 KO) in the WAT. To resolve this hypothesis, immunoperoxidase, immunoblot and immunogold microscopy were used. AQP1 expression was found with the use of immunohistochemistry and was confirmed by immunogold microscopy in the vessels of mouse WAT of all studied groups. Semi-quantitative immunoblot and quantitative immunogold microscopy showed a significant increase (by 2.5- to 3-fold) in the abundance of AQP1 protein expression in WAT in the 72 h starved AQP7 KO mice as compared to AQP7+/+ (p < 0.05) and AQP7−/− (p < 0.01) controls, respectively. In conclusion, the AQP1 water channel located in the vessels of WAT is up-regulated in response to prolonged starvation in the WAT of AQP7 KO mice. The present data suggest that an interaction of different AQP isoforms is required for maintaining proper water homeostasis within the mice WAT. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
The Effects of Aquaporin-1 in Pulmonary Edema Induced by Fat Embolism Syndrome
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1183; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071183 - 21 Jul 2016
Cited by 4
Abstract
This study was designed to investigate the role of aquaporin1 (AQP1) in the pathologic process of pulmonary edema induced by fat embolism syndrome (FES) and the effects of a free fatty acid (FFA) mixture on AQP1 expression in pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells (PMVECs). [...] Read more.
This study was designed to investigate the role of aquaporin1 (AQP1) in the pathologic process of pulmonary edema induced by fat embolism syndrome (FES) and the effects of a free fatty acid (FFA) mixture on AQP1 expression in pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells (PMVECs). In vivo, edema was more serious in FES mice compared with the control group. The expression of AQP1 and the wet-to-dry lung weight ratio (W/D) in the FES group were significantly increased compared with the control group. At the same time, inhibition of AQP1 decreased the pathological damage resulting from pulmonary edema. Then we performed a study in vitro to investigate whether AQP1 was induced by FFA release in FES. The mRNA and protein level of AQP1 were increased by FFAs in a dose- and time-dependent manner in PMVECs. In addition, the up-regulation of AQP1 was blocked by the inhibitor of p38 kinase, implicating the p38 MAPK pathway as involved in the FFA-induced AQP1 up-regulation in PMVECs. Our results demonstrate that AQP1 may play important roles in pulmonary edema induced by FES and can be regarded as a new therapy target for treatment of pulmonary edema induced by FES. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Expression and Distribution Pattern of Aquaporin 4, 5 and 11 in Retinas of 15 Different Species
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1145; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071145 - 16 Jul 2016
Cited by 5
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) are small integral membrane proteins with 13 members in mammals and are essential for water transport across membranes. They are found in many different tissues and cells. Currently, there are conflicting results regarding retinal aquaporin expression and subcellular localization between genome [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) are small integral membrane proteins with 13 members in mammals and are essential for water transport across membranes. They are found in many different tissues and cells. Currently, there are conflicting results regarding retinal aquaporin expression and subcellular localization between genome and protein analyses and among various species. AQP4, 7, 9 and 11 were described in the retina of men; whereas AQP6, 8 and 10 were earlier identified in rat retinas and AQP4, 5 and 11 in horses. Since there is a lack of knowledge regarding AQP expression on protein level in retinas of different animal models, we decided to analyze retinal cellular expression of AQP4, 5 and 11 in situ with immunohistochemistry. AQP4 was detected in all 15 explored species, AQP5 and AQP11 in 14 out of 15. Interestingly, AQP4 was unambiguously expressed in Muller glial cells, whereas AQP5 was differentially allocated among the species analyzed. AQP11 expression was Muller glial cell-specific in 50% of the animals, whereas in the others, AQP11 was detected in ganglion cell layer and at photoreceptor outer segments. Our data indicate a disparity in aquaporin distribution in retinas of various animals, especially for AQP5 and 11. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Human Aquaporin 4 Gating Dynamics under Perpendicularly-Oriented Electric-Field Impulses: A Molecular Dynamics Study
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1133; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071133 - 14 Jul 2016
Cited by 8
Abstract
Human aquaporin 4 has been studied using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations in the absence and presence of pulses of external static electric fields. The pulses were 10 ns in duration and 0.012–0.065 V/Å in intensity acting along both directions perpendicular to the pores. [...] Read more.
Human aquaporin 4 has been studied using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations in the absence and presence of pulses of external static electric fields. The pulses were 10 ns in duration and 0.012–0.065 V/Å in intensity acting along both directions perpendicular to the pores. Water permeability and the dipolar response of all residues of interest (including the selectivity filter) within the pores have been studied. Results showed decreased levels of water osmotic permeability within aquaporin channels during orthogonally-oriented field impulses, although care must be taken with regard to statistical certainty. This can be explained observing enhanced “dipolar flipping” of certain key residues, especially serine 211, histidine 201, arginine 216, histidine 95 and cysteine 178. These residues are placed at the extracellular end of the pore (serine 211, histidine 201, and arginine 216) and at the cytoplasm end (histidine 95 and cysteine 178), with the key role in gating mechanism, hence influencing water permeability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Inhibition of AQP1 Hampers Osteosarcoma and Hepatocellular Carcinoma Progression Mediated by Bone Marrow-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1102; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071102 - 11 Jul 2016
Cited by 14
Abstract
The complex cross-talk between tumor cells and their surrounding stromal environment plays a key role in the pathogenesis of cancer. Among several cell types that constitute the tumor stroma, bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) selectively migrate toward the tumor microenvironment and contribute [...] Read more.
The complex cross-talk between tumor cells and their surrounding stromal environment plays a key role in the pathogenesis of cancer. Among several cell types that constitute the tumor stroma, bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs) selectively migrate toward the tumor microenvironment and contribute to the active formation of tumor-associated stroma. Therefore, here we elucidate the involvement of BM-MSCs to promote osteosarcoma (OS) and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells migration and invasion and deepening the role of specific pathways. We analyzed the function of aquaporin 1 (AQP1), a water channel known to promote metastasis and neoangiogenes. AQP1 protein levels were analyzed in OS (U2OS) and HCC (SNU-398) cells exposed to conditioned medium from BM-MSCs. Tumor cell migration and invasion in response to BM-MSC conditioned medium were evaluated through a wound healing assay and Boyden chamber, respectively. The results showed that the AQP1 level was increased in both tumor cell lines after treatment with BM-MSC conditioned medium. Moreover, BM-MSCs-mediated tumor cell migration and invasion were hampered after treatment with AQP1 inhibitor. These data suggest that the recruitment of human BM-MSCs into the tumor microenvironment might cause OS and HCC cell migration and invasion through involvement of AQP1. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessCommunication
Usefulness of Aquaporin 1 as a Prognostic Marker in a Prospective Cohort of Malignant Mesotheliomas
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1041; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071041 - 30 Jun 2016
Cited by 6
Abstract
(1) Background: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive tumour of the serosal membranes, associated with exposure to asbestos. Survival is generally poor, but prognostication for individual patients is difficult. We recently described Aquaporin 1 (AQP1) as independent prognostic factor in two separate retrospective [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive tumour of the serosal membranes, associated with exposure to asbestos. Survival is generally poor, but prognostication for individual patients is difficult. We recently described Aquaporin 1 (AQP1) as independent prognostic factor in two separate retrospective cohorts of MM patients. Here we assess the usefulness of AQP1 prospectively, and determine the inter-observer agreement in assessing AQP1 scores; (2) Methods: A total of 104 consecutive cases of MM were included. Sufficient tissue for immunohistochemistry was available for 100 cases, and these cases were labelled for AQP1. Labelling was assessed by two pathologists. Complete clinical information and follow up was available for 91 cases; (3) Results: Labelling of ≥50% of tumour cells for AQP indicated improved prognosis in a univariate model (median survival 13 versus 8 months, p = 0.008), but the significance was decreased in a multivariate analysis. Scoring for AQP1 was robust, with an inter-observer kappa value of 0.722, indicating substantial agreement between observers; (4) Conclusion: AQP1 is a useful prognostic marker that can be easily incorporated in existing diagnostic immunohistochemical panels and which can be reliably interpreted by different pathologists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Mechanisms Underlying Activation of α1-Adrenergic Receptor-Induced Trafficking of AQP5 in Rat Parotid Acinar Cells under Isotonic or Hypotonic Conditions
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1022; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071022 - 28 Jun 2016
Cited by 3
Abstract
Defective cellular trafficking of aquaporin-5 (AQP5) to the apical plasma membrane (APM) in salivary glands is associated with the loss of salivary fluid secretion. To examine mechanisms of α1-adrenoceptor (AR)-induced trafficking of AQP5, immunoconfocal microscopy and Western blot analysis were used [...] Read more.
Defective cellular trafficking of aquaporin-5 (AQP5) to the apical plasma membrane (APM) in salivary glands is associated with the loss of salivary fluid secretion. To examine mechanisms of α1-adrenoceptor (AR)-induced trafficking of AQP5, immunoconfocal microscopy and Western blot analysis were used to analyze AQP5 localization in parotid tissues stimulated with phenylephrine under different osmolality. Phenylephrine-induced trafficking of AQP5 to the APM and lateral plasma membrane (LPM) was mediated via the α1A-AR subtype, but not the α1B- and α1D-AR subtypes. Phenylephrine-induced trafficking of AQP5 was inhibited by ODQ and KT5823, inhibitors of nitric oxide (NO)-stimulated guanylcyclase (GC) and protein kinase (PK) G, respectively, indicating the involvement of the NO/ soluble (c) GC/PKG signaling pathway. Under isotonic conditions, phenylephrine-induced trafficking was inhibited by La3+, implying the participation of store-operated Ca2+ channel. Under hypotonic conditions, phenylephrine-induced trafficking of AQP5 to the APM was higher than that under isotonic conditions. Under non-stimulated conditions, hypotonicity-induced trafficking of AQP5 to the APM was inhibited by ruthenium red and La3+, suggesting the involvement of extracellular Ca2+ entry. Thus, α1A-AR activation induced the trafficking of AQP5 to the APM and LPM via the Ca2+/ cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)/PKG signaling pathway, which is associated with store-operated Ca2+ entry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Aquaporin-11 (AQP11) Expression in the Mouse Brain
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(6), 861; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17060861 - 01 Jun 2016
Cited by 7
Abstract
Aquaporin-11 (AQP11) is an intracellular aquaporin expressed in various tissues, including brain tissues in mammals. While AQP11-deficient mice have developed fatal polycystic kidneys at one month old, the role of AQP11 in the brain was not well appreciated. In this study, we examined [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-11 (AQP11) is an intracellular aquaporin expressed in various tissues, including brain tissues in mammals. While AQP11-deficient mice have developed fatal polycystic kidneys at one month old, the role of AQP11 in the brain was not well appreciated. In this study, we examined the AQP11 expression in the mouse brain and the brain phenotype of AQP11-deficient mice. AQP11 messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) and protein were expressed in the brain, but much less than in the thymus and kidney. Immunostaining showed that AQP11 was localized at the epithelium of the choroid plexus and at the endothelium of the brain capillary, suggesting that AQP11 may be involved in water transport at the choroid plexus and blood-brain barrier (BBB) in the brain. The expression of AQP4, another brain AQP expressed at the BBB, was decreased by half in AQP11-deficient mice, thereby suggesting the presence of the interaction between AQP11 and AQP4. The brain of AQP11-deficient mice, however, did not show any morphological abnormalities and the function of the BBB was intact. Our findings provide a novel insight into a water transport mechanism mediated by AQPs in the brain, which may lead to a new therapy for brain edema. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effect of AQP9 Expression in Androgen-Independent Prostate Cancer Cell PC3
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 738; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17050738 - 14 May 2016
Cited by 5
Abstract
It is known that aquaporin 9 (AQP9) in the prostate was strictly upregulated by androgen and may represent a novel therapeutic target for several cancers, but whether AQP9 plays a role in the regulation of androgen-independent prostate cancer still remains unclear. In the [...] Read more.
It is known that aquaporin 9 (AQP9) in the prostate was strictly upregulated by androgen and may represent a novel therapeutic target for several cancers, but whether AQP9 plays a role in the regulation of androgen-independent prostate cancer still remains unclear. In the present study, AQP9 was determined in prostate cancer and adjacent cancer tissues; AQP9-siRNA was applied to silencing AQP9 in androgen-independent prostate cancer cell PC3 cell line. Western blot and flow cytometry analysis were employed to detect changes in related-function of control and AQP9-siRNA groups. The results showed that AQP9 is significantly induced in cancer tissues than that in adjacent cancer tissues. Moreover, knockdown of AQP9 in PC3 androgen-independent prostate cancer cell prostate cancer cells increased inhibition rates of proliferation. In addition, knockdown of AQP9 resulted in a significant decrease in the expression of the Bcl-2 and with a notable increase in the expression of Bax and cleaved caspase 3, indicated that AQP9 knockdown promoted apoptosis in prostate cancer cells. From wound healing assay and matrigel invasion, we suggested that AQP9 expression affects the motility and invasiveness of prostate cancer cells. Moreover, In order to explore the pathway may be involved in AQP9-mediated motility and invasion of prostate cancer cells, the phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was significant suppressed in AQP9 siRNA-transfected cells compared with that in control cells, suggesting that AQP9 is involved in the activation of the ERK pathway in androgen-independent prostate cancer cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessArticle
Fragment Screening of Human Aquaporin 1
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(4), 449; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17040449 - 25 Mar 2016
Cited by 1
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) are membrane proteins that enable water transport across cellular plasma membranes in response to osmotic gradients. Phenotypic analyses have revealed important physiological roles for AQPs, and the potential for AQP water channel modulators in various disease states has been proposed. For [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) are membrane proteins that enable water transport across cellular plasma membranes in response to osmotic gradients. Phenotypic analyses have revealed important physiological roles for AQPs, and the potential for AQP water channel modulators in various disease states has been proposed. For example, AQP1 is overexpressed in tumor microvessels, and this correlates with higher metastatic potential and aggressiveness of the malignancy. Chemical modulators would help in identifying the precise contribution of water channel activity in these disease states. These inhibitors would also be important therapeutically, e.g., in anti-cancer treatment. This perceived importance contrasts with the lack of success of high-throughput screens (HTS) to identify effective and specific inhibitors of aquaporins. In this paper, we have screened a library of 1500 “fragments”, i.e., smaller than molecules used in HTS, against human aquaporin (hAQP1) using a thermal shift assay and surface plasmon resonance. Although these fragments may not inhibit their protein target, they bound to and stabilized hAQP1 (sub mM binding affinities (KD), with an temperature of aggregation shift ΔTagg of +4 to +50 °C) in a concentration-dependent fashion. Chemically expanded versions of these fragments should follow the determination of their binding site on the aquaporin surface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Role of Aquaporin 1 Signalling in Cancer Development and Progression
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(2), 299; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18020299 - 29 Jan 2017
Cited by 21
Abstract
Cancer is a major health burden worldwide. Despite the advances in our understanding of its pathogenesis and continued improvement in cancer management and outcomes, there remains a strong clinical demand for more accurate and reliable biomarkers of metastatic progression and novel therapeutic targets [...] Read more.
Cancer is a major health burden worldwide. Despite the advances in our understanding of its pathogenesis and continued improvement in cancer management and outcomes, there remains a strong clinical demand for more accurate and reliable biomarkers of metastatic progression and novel therapeutic targets to abrogate angiogenesis and tumour progression. Aquaporin 1 (AQP1) is a small hydrophobic integral transmembrane protein with a predominant role in trans-cellular water transport. Recently, over-expression of AQP1 has been associated with many types of cancer as a distinctive clinical prognostic factor. This has prompted researchers to evaluate the link between AQP1 and cancer biological functions. Available literature implicates the role of AQP1 in tumour cell migration, invasion and angiogenesis. This article reviews the current understanding of AQP1-facilitated tumour development and progression with a focus on regulatory mechanisms and downstream signalling pathways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins in Brain Edema and Neuropathological Conditions
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(1), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18010055 - 28 Dec 2016
Cited by 16
Abstract
The aquaporin (AQP) family of water channels are a group of small, membrane-spanning proteins that are vital for the rapid transport of water across the plasma membrane. These proteins are widely expressed, from tissues such as the renal epithelium and erythrocytes to the [...] Read more.
The aquaporin (AQP) family of water channels are a group of small, membrane-spanning proteins that are vital for the rapid transport of water across the plasma membrane. These proteins are widely expressed, from tissues such as the renal epithelium and erythrocytes to the various cells of the central nervous system. This review will elucidate the basic structure and distribution of aquaporins and discuss the role of aquaporins in various neuropathologies. AQP1 and AQP4, the two primary aquaporin molecules of the central nervous system, regulate brain water and CSF movement and contribute to cytotoxic and vasogenic edema, where they control the size of the intracellular and extracellular fluid volumes, respectively. AQP4 expression is vital to the cellular migration and angiogenesis at the heart of tumor growth; AQP4 is central to dysfunctions in glutamate metabolism, synaptogenesis, and memory consolidation; and AQP1 and AQP4 adaptations have been seen in obstructive and non-obstructive hydrocephalus and may be therapeutic targets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins in the Spinal Cord
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 2050; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17122050 - 07 Dec 2016
Cited by 13
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) are water channel proteins robustly expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). A number of previous studies described the cellular expression sites and investigated their major roles and function in the brain and spinal cord. Among thirteen different mammalian AQPs, AQP1 [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) are water channel proteins robustly expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). A number of previous studies described the cellular expression sites and investigated their major roles and function in the brain and spinal cord. Among thirteen different mammalian AQPs, AQP1 and AQP4 have been mainly studied in the CNS and evidence has been presented that they play important roles in the pathogenesis of CNS injury, edema and multiple diseases such as multiple sclerosis, neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, glioblastoma multiforme, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. The objective of this review is to highlight the current knowledge about AQPs in the spinal cord and their proposed roles in pathophysiology and pathogenesis related to spinal cord lesions and injury. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporin-4: A Potential Therapeutic Target for Cerebral Edema
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(10), 1413; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17101413 - 29 Sep 2016
Cited by 16
Abstract
Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is a family member of water-channel proteins and is dominantly expressed in the foot process of glial cells surrounding capillaries. The predominant expression at the boundaries between cerebral parenchyma and major fluid compartments suggests the function of aquaporin-4 in water transfer [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is a family member of water-channel proteins and is dominantly expressed in the foot process of glial cells surrounding capillaries. The predominant expression at the boundaries between cerebral parenchyma and major fluid compartments suggests the function of aquaporin-4 in water transfer into and out of the brain parenchyma. Accumulating evidences have suggested that the dysregulation of aquaporin-4 relates to the brain edema resulting from a variety of neuro-disorders, such as ischemic or hemorrhagic stroke, trauma, etc. During edema formation in the brain, aquaporin-4 has been shown to contribute to the astrocytic swelling, while in the resolution phase, it has been seen to facilitate the reabsorption of extracellular fluid. In addition, aquaporin-4-deficient mice are protected from cytotoxic edema produced by water intoxication and brain ischemia. However, aquaporin-4 deletion exacerbates vasogenic edema in the brain of different pathological disorders. Recently, our published data showed that the upregulation of aquaporin-4 in astrocytes probably contributes to the transition from cytotoxic edema to vasogenic edema. In this review, apart from the traditional knowledge, we also introduce our latest findings about the effects of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and microRNA-29b on aquaporin-4, which could provide powerful intervention tools targeting aquaporin-4. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Expression, Distribution and Role of Aquaporin Water Channels in Human and Animal Stomach and Intestines
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1399; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17091399 - 29 Aug 2016
Cited by 32
Abstract
Stomach and intestines are involved in the secretion of gastrointestinal fluids and the absorption of nutrients and fluids, which ensure normal gut functions. Aquaporin water channels (AQPs) represent a major transcellular route for water transport in the gastrointestinal tract. Until now, at least [...] Read more.
Stomach and intestines are involved in the secretion of gastrointestinal fluids and the absorption of nutrients and fluids, which ensure normal gut functions. Aquaporin water channels (AQPs) represent a major transcellular route for water transport in the gastrointestinal tract. Until now, at least 11 AQPs (AQP1–11) have been found to be present in the stomach, small and large intestines. These AQPs are distributed in different cell types in the stomach and intestines, including gastric epithelial cells, gastric glands cells, absorptive epithelial cells (enterocytes), goblet cells and Paneth cells. AQP1 is abundantly distributed in the endothelial cells of the gastrointestinal tract. AQP3 and AQP4 are mainly distributed in the basolateral membrane of epithelial cells in the stomach and intestines. AQP7, AQP8, AQP10 and AQP11 are distributed in the apical of enterocytes in the small and large intestines. Although AQP-null mice displayed almost no phenotypes in gastrointestinal tracts, the alterations of the expression and localization of these AQPs have been shown to be associated with the pathology of gastrointestinal disorders, which suggests that AQPs play important roles serving as potential therapeutic targets. Therefore, this review provides an overview of the expression, localization and distribution of AQPs in the stomach, small and large intestine of human and animals. Furthermore, this review emphasizes the potential roles of AQPs in the physiology and pathophysiology of stomach and intestines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
Open AccessReview
Aquaporin-4 in Astroglial Cells in the CNS and Supporting Cells of Sensory Organs—A Comparative Perspective
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1411; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17091411 - 26 Aug 2016
Cited by 11
Abstract
The main water channel of the brain, aquaporin-4 (AQP4), is one of the classical water-specific aquaporins. It is expressed in many epithelial tissues in the basolateral membrane domain. It is present in the membranes of supporting cells in most sensory organs in a [...] Read more.
The main water channel of the brain, aquaporin-4 (AQP4), is one of the classical water-specific aquaporins. It is expressed in many epithelial tissues in the basolateral membrane domain. It is present in the membranes of supporting cells in most sensory organs in a specifically adapted pattern: in the supporting cells of the olfactory mucosa, AQP4 occurs along the basolateral aspects, in mammalian retinal Müller cells it is highly polarized. In the cochlear epithelium of the inner ear, it is expressed basolaterally in some cells but strictly basally in others. Within the central nervous system, aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is expressed by cells of the astroglial family, more specifically, by astrocytes and ependymal cells. In the mammalian brain, AQP4 is located in high density in the membranes of astrocytic endfeet facing the pial surface and surrounding blood vessels. At these locations, AQP4 plays a role in the maintenance of ionic homeostasis and volume regulation. This highly polarized expression has not been observed in the brain of fish where astroglial cells have long processes and occur mostly as radial glial cells. In the brain of the zebrafish, AQP4 immunoreactivity is found along the radial extent of astroglial cells. This suggests that the polarized expression of AQP4 was not present at all stages of evolution. Thus, a polarized expression of AQP4 as part of a control mechanism for a stable ionic environment and water balanced occurred at several locations in supporting and glial cells during evolution. This initially basolateral membrane localization of AQP4 is shifted to highly polarized expression in astrocytic endfeet in the mammalian brain and serves as a part of the neurovascular unit to efficiently maintain homeostasis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporin-4 and Cerebrovascular Diseases
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1249; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081249 - 11 Aug 2016
Cited by 15
Abstract
Cerebrovascular diseases are conditions caused by problems with brain vasculature, which have a high morbidity and mortality. Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is the most abundant water channel in the brain and crucial for the formation and resolution of brain edema. Considering brain edema is an [...] Read more.
Cerebrovascular diseases are conditions caused by problems with brain vasculature, which have a high morbidity and mortality. Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is the most abundant water channel in the brain and crucial for the formation and resolution of brain edema. Considering brain edema is an important pathophysiological change after stoke, AQP4 is destined to have close relation with cerebrovascular diseases. However, this relation is not limited to brain edema due to other biological effects elicited by AQP4. Till now, multiple studies have investigated roles of AQP4 in cerebrovascular diseases. This review focuses on expression of AQP4 and the effects of AQP4 on brain edema and neural cells injuries in cerebrovascular diseases including cerebral ischemia, intracerebral hemorrhage and subarachnoid hemorrhage. In the current review, we pay more attention to the studies of recent years directly from cerebrovascular diseases animal models or patients, especially those using AQP4 gene knockout mice. This review also elucidates the potential of AQP4as an excellent therapeutic target. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Neuroimmunological Implications of AQP4 in Astrocytes
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1306; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081306 - 10 Aug 2016
Cited by 15
Abstract
The brain has high-order functions and is composed of several kinds of cells, such as neurons and glial cells. It is becoming clear that many kinds of neurodegenerative diseases are more-or-less influenced by astrocytes, which are a type of glial cell. Aquaporin-4 (AQP4), [...] Read more.
The brain has high-order functions and is composed of several kinds of cells, such as neurons and glial cells. It is becoming clear that many kinds of neurodegenerative diseases are more-or-less influenced by astrocytes, which are a type of glial cell. Aquaporin-4 (AQP4), a membrane-bound protein that regulates water permeability is a member of the aquaporin family of water channel proteins that is expressed in the endfeet of astrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS). Recently, AQP4 has been shown to function, not only as a water channel protein, but also as an adhesion molecule that is involved in cell migration and neuroexcitation, synaptic plasticity, and learning/memory through mechanisms involved in long-term potentiation or long-term depression. The most extensively examined role of AQP4 is its ability to act as a neuroimmunological inducer. Previously, we showed that AQP4 plays an important role in neuroimmunological functions in injured mouse brain in concert with the proinflammatory inducer osteopontin (OPN). The aim of this review is to summarize the functional implication of AQP4, focusing especially on its neuroimmunological roles. This review is a good opportunity to compile recent knowledge and could contribute to the therapeutic treatment of autoimmune diseases through strategies targeting AQP4. Finally, the author would like to hypothesize on AQP4’s role in interaction between reactive astrocytes and reactive microglial cells, which might occur in neurodegenerative diseases. Furthermore, a therapeutic strategy for AQP4-related neurodegenerative diseases is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Aquaporins in Health and Disease: An Overview Focusing on the Gut of Different Species
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1213; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17081213 - 27 Jul 2016
Cited by 17
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) play a pivotal role in gut homeostasis since their distribution and function is modulated both in physiological and in pathophysiological conditions. The transport of water and solutes through gut epithelia is essential for osmoregulation and digestive and absorptive functions. This passage [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) play a pivotal role in gut homeostasis since their distribution and function is modulated both in physiological and in pathophysiological conditions. The transport of water and solutes through gut epithelia is essential for osmoregulation and digestive and absorptive functions. This passage is regulated by different AQP isoforms and characterized by their peculiar distribution in the gastrointestinal tract. To date, AQP localization has been identified in the gut and associated organs of several mammalian species by different techniques (immunohistochemical, western blotting, and RT-PCR). The present review describes the modulation of AQP expression, distribution, and function in gut pathophysiology. At the same time, the comparative description of AQP in animal species sheds light on the full range of AQP functions and the screening of their activity as transport modulators, diagnostic biomarkers, and drug targets. Moreover, the phenotype of knockout mice for several AQPs and their compensatory role and the use of specific AQP inhibitors have been also reviewed. The reported data could be useful to design future research in both basic and clinical fields. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins in the Colon as a New Therapeutic Target in Diarrhea and Constipation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1172; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071172 - 20 Jul 2016
Cited by 15
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) play important roles in the water transport system in the human body. There are currently 13 types of AQP, AQP0 through AQP12, which are expressed in various organs. Many members of the AQP family are expressed in the intestinal tract. AQP3 [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) play important roles in the water transport system in the human body. There are currently 13 types of AQP, AQP0 through AQP12, which are expressed in various organs. Many members of the AQP family are expressed in the intestinal tract. AQP3 is predominantly expressed in the colon, ultimately controlling the water transport. Recently, it was clarified that several laxatives exhibit a laxative effect by changing the AQP3 expression level in the colon. In addition, it was revealed that morphine causes severe constipation by increasing the AQP3 expression level in the colon. These findings have shown that AQP3 is one of the most important functional molecules in water transport in the colon. This review will focus on the physiological and pathological roles of AQP3 in the colon, and discuss clinical applications of colon AQP3. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Progress in AQP Research and New Developments in Therapeutic Approaches to Ischemic and Hemorrhagic Stroke
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1146; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071146 - 18 Jul 2016
Cited by 13
Abstract
Cerebral edema often manifests after the development of cerebrovascular disease, particularly in the case of stroke, both ischemic and hemorrhagic. Without clinical intervention, the influx of water into brain tissues leads to increased intracranial pressure, cerebral herniation, and ultimately death. Strategies to manage [...] Read more.
Cerebral edema often manifests after the development of cerebrovascular disease, particularly in the case of stroke, both ischemic and hemorrhagic. Without clinical intervention, the influx of water into brain tissues leads to increased intracranial pressure, cerebral herniation, and ultimately death. Strategies to manage the development of edema constitute a major unmet therapeutic need. However, despite its major clinical significance, the mechanisms underlying cerebral water transport and edema formation remain elusive. Aquaporins (AQPs) are a class of water channel proteins which have been implicated in the regulation of water homeostasis and cerebral edema formation, and thus represent a promising target for alleviating stroke-induced cerebral edema. This review examines the significance of relevant AQPs in stroke injury and subsequently explores neuroprotective strategies aimed at modulating AQP expression, with a particular focus on AQP4, the most abundant AQP in the central nervous system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Astrocyte Aquaporin Dynamics in Health and Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1121; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071121 - 13 Jul 2016
Cited by 17
Abstract
The family of aquaporins (AQPs), membrane water channels, consists of diverse types of proteins that are mainly permeable to water; some are also permeable to small solutes, such as glycerol and urea. They have been identified in a wide range of organisms, from [...] Read more.
The family of aquaporins (AQPs), membrane water channels, consists of diverse types of proteins that are mainly permeable to water; some are also permeable to small solutes, such as glycerol and urea. They have been identified in a wide range of organisms, from microbes to vertebrates and plants, and are expressed in various tissues. Here, we focus on AQP types and their isoforms in astrocytes, a major glial cell type in the central nervous system (CNS). Astrocytes have anatomical contact with the microvasculature, pia, and neurons. Of the many roles that astrocytes have in the CNS, they are key in maintaining water homeostasis. The processes involved in this regulation have been investigated intensively, in particular regulation of the permeability and expression patterns of different AQP types in astrocytes. Three aquaporin types have been described in astrocytes: aquaporins AQP1 and AQP4 and aquaglyceroporin AQP9. The aim here is to review their isoforms, subcellular localization, permeability regulation, and expression patterns in the CNS. In the human CNS, AQP4 is expressed in normal physiological and pathological conditions, but astrocytic expression of AQP1 and AQP9 is mainly associated with a pathological state. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Human Aquaporin-4 and Molecular Modeling: Historical Perspective and View to the Future
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1119; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071119 - 13 Jul 2016
Cited by 7
Abstract
Among the different aquaporins (AQPs), human aquaporin-4 (hAQP4) has attracted the greatest interest in recent years as a new promising therapeutic target. Such a membrane protein is, in fact, involved in a multiple sclerosis-like immunopathology called Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO) and in several disorders [...] Read more.
Among the different aquaporins (AQPs), human aquaporin-4 (hAQP4) has attracted the greatest interest in recent years as a new promising therapeutic target. Such a membrane protein is, in fact, involved in a multiple sclerosis-like immunopathology called Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO) and in several disorders resulting from imbalanced water homeostasis such as deafness and cerebral edema. The gap of knowledge in its functioning and dynamics at the atomistic level of detail has hindered the development of rational strategies for designing hAQP4 modulators. The application, lately, of molecular modeling has proved able to fill this gap providing a breeding ground to rationally address compounds targeting hAQP4. In this review, we give an overview of the important advances obtained in this field through the application of Molecular Dynamics (MD) and other complementary modeling techniques. The case studies presented herein are discussed with the aim of providing important clues for computational chemists and biophysicists interested in this field and looking for new challenges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Nuclear Receptor Regulation of Aquaporin-2 in the Kidney
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1105; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071105 - 11 Jul 2016
Cited by 13
Abstract
Aquaporin-2 (AQP2) is a vasopressin-regulated water channel responsible for regulating water reabsorption through the apical plasma membrane of the principal cells of renal collecting ducts. It has been found that dysregulation and dysfunction of AQP2 cause many disorders related to water balance in [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-2 (AQP2) is a vasopressin-regulated water channel responsible for regulating water reabsorption through the apical plasma membrane of the principal cells of renal collecting ducts. It has been found that dysregulation and dysfunction of AQP2 cause many disorders related to water balance in people and animals, including polyuria and dilutional hyponatremia. Classically, AQP2 mRNA and protein expression and its membrane translocation are regulated by systemic vasopressin involving short-term regulation of AQP2 trafficking to and from the apical plasma membrane and long-term regulation of the total amount of the AQP2 protein in the cell. Recently, increasing evidence has demonstrated that collecting duct AQP2 expression and membrane translocation are also under the control of many other local factors, especially nuclear receptors. Here, we briefly review the progress of studies in this area and discuss the role of nuclear receptors in the regulation of water reabsorption via affecting AQP2 expression and function. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Hepatocyte and Sertoli Cell Aquaporins, Recent Advances and Research Trends
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1096; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071096 - 09 Jul 2016
Cited by 11
Abstract
Aquaporins (AQPs) are proteinaceous channels widespread in nature where they allow facilitated permeation of water and uncharged through cellular membranes. AQPs play a number of important roles in both health and disease. This review focuses on the most recent advances and research trends [...] Read more.
Aquaporins (AQPs) are proteinaceous channels widespread in nature where they allow facilitated permeation of water and uncharged through cellular membranes. AQPs play a number of important roles in both health and disease. This review focuses on the most recent advances and research trends regarding the expression and modulation, as well as physiological and pathophysiological functions of AQPs in hepatocytes and Sertoli cells (SCs). Besides their involvement in bile formation, hepatocyte AQPs are involved in maintaining energy balance acting in hepatic gluconeogenesis and lipid metabolism, and in critical processes such as ammonia detoxification and mitochondrial output of hydrogen peroxide. Roles are played in clinical disorders including fatty liver disease, diabetes, obesity, cholestasis, hepatic cirrhosis and hepatocarcinoma. In the seminiferous tubules, particularly in SCs, AQPs are also widely expressed and seem to be implicated in the various stages of spermatogenesis. Like in hepatocytes, AQPs may be involved in maintaining energy homeostasis in these cells and have a major role in the metabolic cooperation established in the testicular tissue. Altogether, this information represents the mainstay of current and future investigation in an expanding field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins and Brain Tumors
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1029; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071029 - 29 Jun 2016
Cited by 22
Abstract
Brain primary tumors are among the most diverse and complex human cancers, and they are normally classified on the basis of the cell-type and/or the grade of malignancy (the most malignant being glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), grade IV). Glioma cells are able to migrate [...] Read more.
Brain primary tumors are among the most diverse and complex human cancers, and they are normally classified on the basis of the cell-type and/or the grade of malignancy (the most malignant being glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), grade IV). Glioma cells are able to migrate throughout the brain and to stimulate angiogenesis, by inducing brain capillary endothelial cell proliferation. This in turn causes loss of tight junctions and fragility of the blood–brain barrier, which becomes leaky. As a consequence, the most serious clinical complication of glioblastoma is the vasogenic brain edema. Both glioma cell migration and edema have been correlated with modification of the expression/localization of different isoforms of aquaporins (AQPs), a family of water channels, some of which are also involved in the transport of other small molecules, such as glycerol and urea. In this review, we discuss relationships among expression/localization of AQPs and brain tumors/edema, also focusing on the possible role of these molecules as both diagnostic biomarkers of cancer progression, and therapeutic targets. Finally, we will discuss the possibility that AQPs, together with other cancer promoting factors, can be exchanged among brain cells via extracellular vesicles (EVs). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins in Urinary Extracellular Vesicles (Exosomes)
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(6), 957; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17060957 - 17 Jun 2016
Cited by 11
Abstract
Since the successful characterization of urinary extracellular vesicles (uEVs) by Knepper’s group in 2004, these vesicles have been a focus of intense basic and translational research worldwide, with the aim of developing novel biomarkers and therapeutics for renal disease. Along with these studies, [...] Read more.
Since the successful characterization of urinary extracellular vesicles (uEVs) by Knepper’s group in 2004, these vesicles have been a focus of intense basic and translational research worldwide, with the aim of developing novel biomarkers and therapeutics for renal disease. Along with these studies, there is growing evidence that aquaporins (AQPs), water channel proteins, in uEVs have the potential to be diagnostically useful. In this review, we highlight current knowledge of AQPs in uEVs from their discovery to clinical application. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Aquaporins in Salivary Glands: From Basic Research to Clinical Applications
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 166; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17020166 - 27 Jan 2016
Cited by 25
Abstract
Salivary glands are involved in saliva secretion that ensures proper oral health. Aquaporins are expressed in salivary glands and play a major role in saliva secretion. This review will provide an overview of the salivary gland morphology and physiology of saliva secretion, and [...] Read more.
Salivary glands are involved in saliva secretion that ensures proper oral health. Aquaporins are expressed in salivary glands and play a major role in saliva secretion. This review will provide an overview of the salivary gland morphology and physiology of saliva secretion, and focus on the expression, subcellular localization and role of aquaporins under physiological and pathophysiological conditions, as well as clinical applications involving aquaporins. This review is highlighting expression and localization of aquaporins in human, rat and mouse, the most studied species and is pointing out possible difference between major salivary glands, i.e., parotid, submandibular and sublingual glands. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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Open AccessReview
Urine Aquaporin-2: A Promising Marker of Response to the Arginine Vasopressin Type-2 Antagonist, Tolvaptan in Patients with Congestive Heart Failure
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(1), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17010105 - 14 Jan 2016
Cited by 11
Abstract
Aquaporin-2, a member of the aquaporin family, is an arginine vasopressin-regulated water channel expressed in the renal collecting duct, and a promising marker of the concentrating and diluting ability of the kidney. The arginine vasopressin type-2 antagonist, tolvaptan, is a new-generation diuretic; it [...] Read more.
Aquaporin-2, a member of the aquaporin family, is an arginine vasopressin-regulated water channel expressed in the renal collecting duct, and a promising marker of the concentrating and diluting ability of the kidney. The arginine vasopressin type-2 antagonist, tolvaptan, is a new-generation diuretic; it is especially indicated in patients with decompensated heart failure refractory to conventional diuretics. However, the ideal responders to tolvaptan have not yet been identified, and non-responders experience worse clinical courses despite treatment with tolvaptan. Urine aquaporin-2 has recently been demonstrated as a promising predictor of response to tolvaptan. We here validated aquaporin-2-guided tolvaptan therapy in patients with decompensated heart failure. Long-term efficacy of tolvaptan treatment in the responders defined by aquaporin-2 needs to be validated in the future prospective study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aquaporin)
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