Defective cellular trafficking of lacrimal gland aquaporin-5 in Sjögren's syndrome

Lancet. 2001 Mar 3;357(9257):688-9. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(00)04140-4.


Dry eyes and dry mouth are clinical hallmarks of Sjögren's syndrome. We assessed the distribution of aquaporin-5 (AQP5) in lacrimal gland biopsy samples. Healthy controls and patients with Mikulicz's disease or non-Sjögren's syndrome dry eye had the expected apical distribution of AQP5 in lacrimal acinar cells. By contrast, cytoplasmic AQP5 was seen in patients with Sjögren's syndrome. Sodium channel and sodium-potassium ATPase distributions were normal in all groups. These findings show a selective defect in lacrimal gland AQP5 trafficking in Sjögren's syndrome that might contribute to decreased lacrimation and dry eye in these patients.

Publication types

  • Letter

MeSH terms

  • Aquaporin 5
  • Aquaporins / metabolism*
  • Cytoplasm / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Lacrimal Apparatus / metabolism*
  • Membrane Proteins*
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / metabolism*


  • AQP5 protein, human
  • Aquaporin 5
  • Aquaporins
  • Membrane Proteins