Inhibition of aquaporin 4 by antiepileptic drugs

Bioorg Med Chem. 2009 Jan 1;17(1):418-24. doi: 10.1016/j.bmc.2007.12.038. Epub 2008 Jan 4.


The potential of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) to inhibit the water transport properties of aquaporin 4 (AQP4) was investigated using a combination of in silico and in vitro screening methods. Virtual docking studies on 14 AEDs indicated a range of docking energies that spanned approximately 40 kcal/mol, where the most stabilized energies were consistent with that of the previously identified AQP4 inhibitor acetazolamide. Nine AEDs and one bio-active metabolite were further investigated in a functional assay using AQP4 expressing Xenopus oocytes. Seven of the assayed compounds were found to inhibit AQP4 function, while three did not. A linear correlation was indicated between the in silico docking energies and the in vitro AQP4 inhibitory activity at 20 microM.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anticonvulsants / pharmacology*
  • Aquaporin 4 / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
  • Humans
  • Oocytes
  • Protein Binding
  • Thermodynamics
  • Xenopus


  • Anticonvulsants
  • Aquaporin 4