Abstract This study investigates whether progesterone administration regulates AQP4 and GFAP expression in rats with bilateral contusion injuries of the medial frontal cortex. Male rats were given 0 or 16 mg/kg injections of progesterone at 1, 6, 24, and 48 h post-injury. Brains were extracted at 24 h or 72 h post-injury and assayed for cerebral edema and AQP4 and GFAP expression using Western blot analysis. Progesterone treatments reduced brain water content significantly in the brain-injured groups. There was no significant change in AQP4 expression 24 h after progesterone treatment compared to lesion + vehicle animals. However, progesterone significantly reduced AQP4 expression at 72 h post-injury in the tissue bounded by the lateral ventricles and the peri-contusion areas compared to lesion+ vehicle rats, but increased AQP4 expression in the tissue surrounding the third ventricle. Also progesterone effects on GFAP expression varied according to brain region. Our results can be taken to show that the expression of AQP4 protein after TBI is time-dependent, region-specific, and possibly implicated in the formation and resolution of TBI-induced cerebral edema.