Localisation of the vacuolar proton pump (V-H+ -ATPase) and carbonic anhydrase II in the human eccrine sweat gland

J Mol Histol. 2004 May;35(4):339-45. doi: 10.1023/b:hijo.0000039837.45595.a6.


The localisation of the vacuolar proton pump (V-H+ -ATPase) and the enzyme carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) was investigated in the human eccrine sweat gland employing standard immunohistochemical techniques after antigen retrieval using microwave heat treatment and high pressure. The high-pressure antigen retrieval unmasked the presence of V-H+ -ATPase in the clear cells of the secretory coil, with a distribution similar to that previously observed for CAII. However, the dark cells were unreactive to both antibodies. In addition, heat and high-pressure antigen retrieval demonstrated the presence of CAII in the apical zone of luminal cells of the reabsorptive duct, a location not previously reported. The localisation of V-H+ -ATPase and CAII in the secretory coil clear cells suggests that the formation of HCO3- and H+ by carbonic anhydrase II and the transport of H+ by V-H+ -ATPase may play an role in sweat fluid secretion. Their presence at the apex of the duct cells indicates involvement in ductal ion reabsorption.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Eccrine Glands / cytology
  • Eccrine Glands / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Skin / anatomy & histology
  • Skin / metabolism*
  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases / metabolism*


  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases