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Secondary data analytics of aquaporin expression levels in glioblastoma stem-like cells

Isokpehi, Raphael D.; Valero, Katharina C. Wollenberg; Graham, Barbara E.; Pacurari, Maricica; Sims, Jennifer N.; Udensi, Udensi K.; Ndebele, Kenneth


Raphael D. Isokpehi

Katharina C. Wollenberg Valero

Barbara E. Graham

Maricica Pacurari

Jennifer N. Sims

Udensi K. Udensi

Kenneth Ndebele


Katharina Wollenberg Valero


Glioblastoma is the most common brain tumor in adults in which recurrence has been attributed to the presence of cancer stem cells in a hypoxic microenvironment. On the basis of tumor formation in vivo and growth type in vitro, two published microarray gene expression profiling studies grouped nine glioblastoma stem-like (GS) cell lines into one of two groups: full (GSf) or restricted (GSr) stem-like phenotypes. Aquaporin-1 (AQP1) and aquaporin-4 (AQP4) are water transport proteins that are highly expressed in primary glial-derived tumors. However, the expression levels of AQP1 and AQP4 have not been previously described in a panel of 92 glioma samples. Therefore, we designed secondary data analytics methods to determine the expression levels of AQP1 and AQP4 in GS cell lines and glioblastoma neurospheres. Our investigation also included a total of 2,566 expression levels from 28 Affymetrix microarray probe sets encoding 13 human aquaporins (AQP0–AQP12); CXCR4 (the receptor for stromal cell derived factor-1 [SDF-1], a potential glioma stem cell therapeutic target]); and PROM1 (gene encoding CD133, the widely used glioma stem cell marker). Interactive visual representation designs for integrating phenotypic features and expression levels revealed that inverse expression levels of AQP1 and AQP4 correlate with distinct phenotypes in a set of cell lines grouped into full and restricted stem-like phenotypes. Discriminant function analysis further revealed that AQP1 and AQP4 expression are better predictors for tumor formation and growth types in glioblastoma stem-like cells than are CXCR4 and PROM1. Future investigations are needed to characterize the molecular mechanisms for inverse expression levels of AQP1 and AQP4 in the glioblastoma stem-like neurospheres.


Isokpehi, R. D., Valero, K. C. W., Graham, B. E., Pacurari, M., Sims, J. N., Udensi, U. K., & Ndebele, K. (2015). Secondary data analytics of aquaporin expression levels in glioblastoma stem-like cells. Cancer Informatics, 14, 95-103.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 4, 2015
Online Publication Date Jul 30, 2015
Publication Date 2015
Deposit Date Sep 12, 2018
Publicly Available Date Sep 13, 2018
Journal Cancer Informatics
Print ISSN 1176-9351
Electronic ISSN 1176-9351
Publisher Libertas Academica
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Pages 95-103
Keywords Aquaporins; Aquaporin-1; Aquaporin-4; Brain; Cancer; Gliomas; Glioblastoma; Hypoxia; Neurospheres; Visual analytics
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© the authors, publisher and licensee Libertas Academica Limited. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 License ( which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (

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