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In Vivo. 2002 Sep-Oct;16(5):333-6.

Apelin expression in normal human tissues.

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Department of Evolutive and Comparative Biology, University Federico II, Naples, Italy.


Apelin is an endogenous ligand of the human orphan receptor APJ (orphan G protein-coupled receptor). This peptide is produced through processing from the C-terminal portion in the pre-proprotein consisting of 77 amino acid residues and exists in multiple molecular forms. Although the main physiological functions of apelin have not been clarified yet, it has been demonstrated that apelin partially suppresses cytokine production from mouse spleen and, specifically, induces the promotion of extracellular acidification and inhibition of cAMP production in Chinese hamster ovary cells. Moreover, it is involved in the regulation of blood pressure and blood flow. In this study we have analyzed, by immunohistochemistry, apelin distribution in several human tissues, demonstrating that apelin has a widespread pattern of expression. These results seem to confirm that apelin functions widely in various tissues interacting with its specific receptor APJ.

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