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Mol Aspects Med. 2013 Apr-Jun;34(2-3):702-10. doi: 10.1016/j.mam.2012.07.015.

Solute carriers as drug targets: current use, clinical trials and prospective.

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Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, BMC, Uppsala SE 75124, Sweden.


Solute carriers (SLCs) comprise a large family of membrane transporters responsible for the transmembrane transport of a wide variety of substrates such as inorganic ions, amino acids, neurotransmitters and sugars. Despite being the largest family of membrane transport proteins, SLCs have been relatively under-utilized as therapeutic drug targets by approved drugs. In this paper, we aim to catalogue therapeutic SLCs utilized by approved drugs or currently in clinical trials. By mining information on clinical trials from the "drugs in clinical trials database" we were able to identify potentially novel SLC drug targets currently under development. We also searched the literature for SLCs that have been discussed as future therapeutic drug targets. We find SLCs to be utilized as therapeutic targets in treatment of a wide variety of diseases and disorders, such as major depression, ADHD, osteoporosis and hypertension. Drugs targeting SLCs for treatment of diabetes, constipation and hypercholesterolaemia are currently in clinical trials. SLC drug targets have also been explored in clinical trials for cardioprotection after an ischemic event. SLCs are of particular interest as targets in antineoplastic treatment and for the targeted transport of cytotoxic drugs into tumors, e.g. via the glucose transporters GLUT1-5 and SGLT1-3.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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