Anti-tumor effect of aquaporin 3 monoclonal antibody on syngeneic mouse tumor model

Manami Tanaka, Anmi Ito, Seiji Shiozawa, Mariko Hara-Chikuma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Aquaporin-3 (AQP3), a water channel protein, has been found to be involved in cancer progression via water and small molecule transport function. However, drug development targeting AQP3 has not yet begun. Here, we showed that a recently established anti-AQP3 monoclonal antibody (mAb) suppresses tumor growth in allograft mouse colorectal tumor models produced using CT26 or MC38 cancer cells. Administration of the anti-AQP3 mAb to BALB/c mice with transplanted CT26 cells increased the M1/M2 ratio of tumor-associated macrophages (TAM) and improved the mitochondrial function of T cells in the tumor microenvironment (TME). Administration of anti-AQP3 mAb also restored the TAM-induced decrease in T cell proliferation. Macrophage depletion in wild-type mice counteracted the antitumor effect of anti-AQP3 mAb in the mouse tumor model, suggesting that one of the primary targets of anti-AQP3 mAb is macrophages. In in vitro studies using mice bone marrow monocytes and human monocyte THP-1 cells, anti-AQP3 mAb attenuated carcinoma cell-mediated polarization of monocytes into M2-like TAMs. These data suggest that anti-AQP3 mAb suppresses tumor growth by attenuating immunosuppressive M2-like TAMs, which in turn maintains the antitumor function of T cells in the TME. Thus, the anti-AQP3 mAb is a potential cancer therapy that functions by targeting TAMs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101498
JournalTranslational Oncology
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Oct


  • Aquaporin 3
  • Cancer therapy
  • Macrophage
  • Tumor microenvironment
  • Tumor-associated macrophage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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