Transport of glycerol from adipocytes to the liver by Aquaporins (Homo sapiens)

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5, 61, 4, 7, 8, 121, 3, 9-11hepatocyteadipocytecytosolcytosolGlycerolAQP9 glycerolAQP7 tetramerGlycerolAQP7 AQP9 tetramer2


Triglycerides stored in adipocytes are hydrolyzed to yield fatty acids and glycerol. The glycerol is passively transported out of the adipocyte and into the bloodstream by Aquaporin-7 (AQP7) located in the plasma membrane of adipocytes. Glycerol in the bloodstream is passively transported into liver cells by AQP9 located in the plasma membrane of hepatocytes. Once inside the liver cell the glycerol is a substrate for gluconeogenesis. View original pathway at:Reactome.


Pathway is converted from Reactome ID: 432030
Reactome version: 66
Reactome Author 
Reactome Author: May, Bruce

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Ontology Terms



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  1. Rojek A, Praetorius J, Frøkiaer J, Nielsen S, Fenton RA.; ''A current view of the mammalian aquaglyceroporins.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  2. Viadiu H, Gonen T, Walz T.; ''Projection map of aquaporin-9 at 7 A resolution.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  3. Kuriyama H, Kawamoto S, Ishida N, Ohno I, Mita S, Matsuzawa Y, Matsubara K, Okubo K.; ''Molecular cloning and expression of a novel human aquaporin from adipose tissue with glycerol permeability.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  4. Elkjaer M, Vajda Z, Nejsum LN, Kwon T, Jensen UB, Amiry-Moghaddam M, Frøkiaer J, Nielsen S.; ''Immunolocalization of AQP9 in liver, epididymis, testis, spleen, and brain.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  5. Frühbeck G, Catalán V, Gómez-Ambrosi J, Rodríguez A.; ''Aquaporin-7 and glycerol permeability as novel obesity drug-target pathways.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  6. Maeda N, Hibuse T, Funahashi T.; ''Role of aquaporin-7 and aquaporin-9 in glycerol metabolism; involvement in obesity.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  7. Padma S, Smeltz AM, Banks PM, Iannitti DA, McKillop IH.; ''Altered aquaporin 9 expression and localization in human hepatocellular carcinoma.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  8. Ohgusu Y, Ohta KY, Ishii M, Katano T, Urano K, Watanabe J, Inoue K, Yuasa H.; ''Functional characterization of human aquaporin 9 as a facilitative glycerol carrier.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  9. Kondo H, Shimomura I, Kishida K, Kuriyama H, Makino Y, Nishizawa H, Matsuda M, Maeda N, Nagaretani H, Kihara S, Kurachi Y, Nakamura T, Funahashi T, Matsuzawa Y.; ''Human aquaporin adipose (AQPap) gene. Genomic structure, promoter analysis and functional mutation.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  10. Marrades MP, Milagro FI, Martínez JA, Moreno-Aliaga MJ.; ''Differential expression of aquaporin 7 in adipose tissue of lean and obese high fat consumers.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  11. Fain JN, Buehrer B, Bahouth SW, Tichansky DS, Madan AK.; ''Comparison of messenger RNA distribution for 60 proteins in fat cells vs the nonfat cells of human omental adipose tissue.''; PubMed Europe PMC
  12. Tsukaguchi H, Weremowicz S, Morton CC, Hediger MA.; ''Functional and molecular characterization of the human neutral solute channel aquaporin-9.''; PubMed Europe PMC


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101626view11:49, 1 November 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 66
101162view21:35, 31 October 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 65
100688view20:08, 31 October 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 64
100238view16:53, 31 October 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 63
99790view15:19, 31 October 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 62 (2nd attempt)
99341view12:48, 31 October 2018ReactomeTeamreactome version 62
94036view13:52, 16 August 2017ReactomeTeamreactome version 61
93659view11:30, 9 August 2017ReactomeTeamreactome version 61
88358view16:30, 1 August 2016FehrhartOntology Term : 'transport pathway' added !
88357view16:29, 1 August 2016FehrhartOntology Term : 'gluconeogenesis pathway' added !
86778view09:26, 11 July 2016ReactomeTeamreactome version 56
83221view10:25, 18 November 2015ReactomeTeamVersion54
81754view09:55, 26 August 2015ReactomeTeamVersion53
76897view08:17, 17 July 2014ReactomeTeamFixed remaining interactions
76602view11:58, 16 July 2014ReactomeTeamFixed remaining interactions
75933view09:58, 11 June 2014ReactomeTeamRe-fixing comment source
75635view10:51, 10 June 2014ReactomeTeamReactome 48 Update
74990view13:50, 8 May 2014AnweshaFixing comment source for displaying WikiPathways description
74634view08:41, 30 April 2014ReactomeTeamReactome46
45102view22:10, 6 October 2011KhanspersOntology Term : 'ghrelin secreting cell' added !
42141view22:00, 4 March 2011MaintBotAutomatic update
39952view05:58, 21 January 2011MaintBotNew pathway

External references


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NameTypeDatabase referenceComment
AQP7 ProteinO14520 (Uniprot-TrEMBL)
AQP7 tetramerComplexR-HSA-432243 (Reactome) The formation of homotetramers by Aquaporin-7 (AQP7) is inferred from human AQP1, AQP2, AQP3, AQP4, and AQP5.
AQP9 ProteinO43315 (Uniprot-TrEMBL)
AQP9 tetramerComplexR-HSA-432249 (Reactome) The formation of homotetramers by Aquaporin-9 (AQP9) is inferred from rat AQP9 and from human AQP1, AQP2, AQP3, AQP4, and AQP5.
GlycerolMetaboliteCHEBI:17754 (ChEBI)
glycerolMetaboliteCHEBI:17754 (ChEBI)

Annotated Interactions

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SourceTargetTypeDatabase referenceComment
AQP7 tetramermim-catalysisR-HSA-432074 (Reactome)
AQP9 tetramermim-catalysisR-HSA-432049 (Reactome)
GlycerolArrowR-HSA-432049 (Reactome)
GlycerolR-HSA-432074 (Reactome)
R-HSA-432049 (Reactome) Aquaporin-9 (AQP9) passively transports water, glycerol, urea, and some other small neutral solutes across the plasma membrane according to the osmotic gradient. AQP9 is expressed in the sinusoidal plasma membrane in the liver facing the portal vein where it is believed to be responsible for glycerol uptake as part of gluconeogenesis. AQP9 is also expressed in glia, neurons, and peripheral leukocytes.
R-HSA-432074 (Reactome) Aquaporin-7 (AQP7) passively transports glycerol and water across the plasma membrane according to the osmotic gradient. AQP7 is expressed in adipocytes under the direct control of the PPARG and RXRA nuclear receptors. Expression of AQP7 correlates with release of glycerol from adipocytes. AQP7 is seen to translocate from the nuclear periphery to the plasma membrane during adrenaline-stimulated lipolysis. In rat AQP7 also transports urea.
glycerolArrowR-HSA-432074 (Reactome)
glycerolR-HSA-432049 (Reactome)
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