Expression of aquaporin isoforms during human and mouse tooth development

S. Felszeghy, L. Módis, P. Németh, G. Nagy, T. Zelles, P. Agre, J. Laurikkala, O. Fejerskov, I. Thesleff, S. Nielsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Previously, we described the development of hyaluronan (HA) deposition in human tooth germ tissues that are consistent with water transport in different stages of tooth development. The aquaporins (AQP) constitute a family of membrane water channels that are expressed in many organs. However, there are no data available about the expression pattern of aquaporin water channels in dental structures. In the present study we have characterised the expression of six different aquaporin isoforms (AQP1-5, AQP-9) in developing human and mouse tooth germs by immunohistochemistry using isoform specific antibodies. In the "bell stage" AQP1 was expressed in endothelial cells of small vessels whereas no other structures of the tooth primordial were labeled. AQP2, AQP3 and AQP9 immunoreactivity was not observed in tooth germs, whereas strong AQP4 and AQP5 expression was observed in dental lamina, inner enamel epithelium, stratum intermedium, stellate reticulum and the outer enamel epithelium. Oral epithelium also exhibited AQP4 and AQP5 immunolabeling. During development of the matrices of the dental hard tissues AQP4 and AQP5 immunostaining was observed in the odontoblasts and their processes, as well as in the secretory ameloblast and their apical processes. Immunolabeling controls were negative. In conclusion, AQP4 and AQP5 are expressed in tooth germ tissues in early development in cells that previously have been shown to express HA and/or CD44, indicating that AQP water channels may play a role for ECM hydration during tooth development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)247-257
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2004


  • Aquaporin
  • Human
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Mouse
  • Tooth development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Dentistry(all)
  • Cell Biology


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