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Bioanalysis. 2012 Feb;4(4):431-51. doi: 10.4155/bio.11.326.

Recent advances in metabolomics in oncology.

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LipoScience, Division of Basic Research, Raleigh, NC 27616, USA.


The burden of cancer is growing worldwide and with it a more desperate need for better tools to detect, diagnose and monitor the disease is required. It is well recognized that cancer cells are characterized by distinct metabolic perturbations. The metabolomics approach involves the comprehensive profiling of the full complement of low MW compounds in a biological system. By applying advanced analytical and statistical tools, the 'metabolome' is mined for biomarkers that are associated with the state of cancer. This review presents an introduction to the main analytical platforms used in metabolomics analyses, such as NMR spectroscopy and MS, as well as the statistical tools used to mine these datasets. The discussion focuses on 'state-of-the-art' investigations on the four cancer types that have received the most study by metabolomics, namely breast, prostate, colorectal and liver cancer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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