Table of Contents
International Scholarly Research Notices
Volume 2014, Article ID 580572, 5 pages
Review Article

The Neuroepithelium Disruption Could Generate Autoantibodies against AQP4 and Cause Neuromyelitis Optica and Hydrocephalus

1Departamento de Anatomía, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de La Laguna, 38200 La Laguna, Tenerife, Islas Canarias, Spain
2Instituto de Investigación y Ciencias de Puerto del Rosario, 35600 Puerto del Rosario, Fuerteventura, Islas Canarias, Spain
3Departamento de Ciencias Morfológicas, Universidad de Valencia, 46010 Valencia, Spain

Received 18 June 2014; Revised 11 September 2014; Accepted 14 September 2014; Published 30 October 2014

Academic Editor: I-Jong Wang

Copyright © 2014 Leandro Castañeyra-Ruiz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Neuromyelitis optica is an inflammatory disease characterized by neuritis and myelitis of the optic nerve. Its physiopathology is connected with the aquaporin-4 water channel, since antibodies against aquaporin-4 have been found in the cerebrospinal fluid and blood of neuromyelitis optica patients. The seropositivity for aquaporin-4 antibodies is used for the diagnosis of neuromyelitis optica or neuromyelitis optica spectrum disease. On the other hand, aquaporin-4 is expressed in astrocyte feet in the brain-blood barrier and subventricular zones of the brain ventricles. Aquaporin-4 expression is high in cerebrospinal fluid in hydrocephalus. Furthermore, neuroepithelial denudation precedes noncommunicating hydrocephalus and this neuroepithelial disruption could allow aquaporin-4 to reach anomalous brain areas where it is unrecognized and induce the generation of aquaporin-4 antibodies which could cause the neuromyelitis optica and certain types of hydrocephalus.