IL-13 is known to affect many processes that contribute to an asthmatic phenotype, including inflammation, fibrosis, and mucus production. Members of the aquaporin (AQP) family of transmembrane water channels are targets of regulation in models of lung injury and inflammation. Therefore, we examined AQP mRNA and protein expression in allergen and IL-13-induced mouse models of asthma. Lungs from ovalbumin sensitized and ovalbumin challenged (OVA/OVA) and IL-13 treated mice showed airway thickening, increased mucus production, and pulmonary eosinophilia. Pulmonary function tests showed a significant increase in methacholine-induced airway hyperreactivity in OVA/OVA and IL-13-treated mice as compared with controls. Quantitative PCR analysis revealed differential regulation of AQPs in these two models. AQP1 and AQP4 mRNA expression was downregulated in the OVA/OVA model, but not in the IL-13 model. AQP5 mRNA was reduced in both models, whereas AQP3 was upregulated only in the IL-13 model. Western analysis showed that diminished expression of an apically localized aquaporin, (AQP5), and concomitant upregulation of a basolateral aquaporin (AQP3 or AQP4) are characteristic features of both inducible asthma models. These results demonstrate that aquaporins are common targets of gene expression in both allergen and IL-13 induced mouse models of asthma.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/carissa_krane/3/