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Metabolites. 2013 Jul 5;3(3):552-74. doi: 10.3390/metabo3030552.

A review of applications of metabolomics in cancer.

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1
National Center for Toxicological Research, US Food and Drug Administration, 3900 NCTR Road, Jefferson, AR 72079, USA. Richard.Beger@fda.hhs.gov.

Abstract

Cancer is a devastating disease that alters the metabolism of a cell and the surrounding milieu. Metabolomics is a growing and powerful technology capable of detecting hundreds to thousands of metabolites in tissues and biofluids. The recent advances in metabolomics technologies have enabled a deeper investigation into the metabolism of cancer and a better understanding of how cancer cells use glycolysis, known as the "Warburg effect," advantageously to produce the amino acids, nucleotides and lipids necessary for tumor proliferation and vascularization. Currently, metabolomics research is being used to discover diagnostic cancer biomarkers in the clinic, to better understand its complex heterogeneous nature, to discover pathways involved in cancer that could be used for new targets and to monitor metabolic biomarkers during therapeutic intervention. These metabolomics approaches may also provide clues to personalized cancer treatments by providing useful information to the clinician about the cancer patient's response to medical interventions.

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