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February 2018 (Vol. 28 Issue 11)

Water, water everywhere:

About the author: 

Water, water everywhere: image

Two-thirds of our bodies are made up of water, and yet medicine remains oblivious to the role it can play in our health, a new research paper has said

Two-thirds of our bodies are made up of water, and yet medicine remains oblivious to the role it can play in our health, a new research paper has said.
It was only in the early 1990s that scientists discovered aquaporins, channels that deliver water to cells. They are especially important for the healthy functioning of organs such as the kidneys, lungs and liver.
Now it is thought that many clinical conditions, including diabetes, brain edema, cirrhosis, congestive heart failure and glaucoma, could all be linked to poor aquaporin functioning.
Researchers recently noted that abnormal aquaporin activity in the kidney cells was associated with a form of hereditary diabetes in which the kidneys fail to process urine and conserve water.
Dr Peter Agre of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore made the discovery of aquaporin activity, and his aquaporin 1, as he named it, is linked to efficient renal and pulmonary workings.


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