The promise of metabolomics in cancer molecular therapeutics

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49 Scopus citations


A systematic elucidation of cancer cell dysfunction and therapeutic mechanisms seems within reach with modern functional genomics and proteomics tools. However, for this potential to be realized, the metabolic consequences of gene expression and protein activity must be understood. 'Metabolomics' is currently a major missing component. It differs from classical metabolic studies by its greater breadth, depth and speed, enabled by the huge advances in analytical instrumentation (especially nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry) over the past two decades. Multiple metabolic pathways and networks can now be traced by the flow of atoms through metabolites, known as isotopomer analyses. Thus, metabolomics demands both high-throughput and high-information content analyses, and interpretation; the latter is currently a bottleneck. There are currently very few metabolomic studies in cancer therapeutics, despite this great need and potential.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)584-592
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Molecular Therapeutics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • Chemoinformatics
  • Flux
  • Isotopomers
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Metabolomics
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Genetics(clinical)


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