Western blot analysis showed that sweat gland cells from freely sweating horses expressed the water channel aquaporin-5 (AQP-5). Immunohistochemistry revealed a strong AQP-5-like activity reaction at the apical membrane of the glandular secretory cells, which was absent from the surrounding myoepithelium and all other skin structures. In anhidrotic horses, AQP-5 was also found at the apical membrane of the luminal sweat gland cells, but the level of expression reduced with the length of time that the animal had displayed anhidrosis. The level of AQP-5 expression was substantially reduced in animals with long-term anhidrosis, hence implicating water channel impairment as a possible factor in the development of this disorder.
- sweat glands