Journal of Cancer Research and Therapeutics

: 2009  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 9  |  Page : 1-

Tumors show enhanced dependency on glucose and glycolytic pathway

BS Dwarakanath1, Nagraj G Huilgol2,  
1 Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 Nanavati Hospital and MRC, Mumbai, India

Correspondence Address:
Nagraj G Huilgol
Chief Radiation Oncologist, Dr. Balabhai Nanavati Hospital, Mumbai-400 056

How to cite this article:
Dwarakanath B S, Huilgol NG. Tumors show enhanced dependency on glucose and glycolytic pathway.J Can Res Ther 2009;5:1-1

How to cite this URL:
Dwarakanath B S, Huilgol NG. Tumors show enhanced dependency on glucose and glycolytic pathway. J Can Res Ther [serial online] 2009 [cited 2021 Oct 24 ];5:1-1
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Full Text

Tumors show enhanced dependency on glucose and glycolytic pathway (even in the presence of oxygen) to generate metabolic energy (ATP) and macromolecular synthesis to sustain rapid cell proliferation. This phenomenon of altered metabolic state first described by the Nobel Laureate Otto Warburg almost 80 years ago is considered as a hallmark of cancer, emerging concomitantly with malignant transformation, mitochondrial malfunction (linked to or independent of mutations), microregional hypoxia, and the evolution of aerobic glycolysis in most types of human tumors. While the enhanced glucose uptake is being increasingly exploited for the noninvasive detection and grading of tumors by positron emission tomography using the F-18-labeled glucose analog 2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG), the development of therapeutic strategies based on this metabolic shift still remains a challenge. Recent studies to unravel the intricate relationships between oncogenic transformation, enhanced glucose usage, degree of malignancy, and therapeutic resistance of tumors have rekindled interest to identify and develop new therapeutic strategies.

Although a number of pharmacological agents that target glucose transport and/or specific glycolytic enzymes overexpressed in tumors are currently under various stages of preclinical studies and clinical trials, the glucose analog, 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG), has been most widely investigated in experimental and clinical oncology. While inhibitors of glycolysis have not been established as primary therapeutic agents in the treatment of cancer so far, there are compelling experimental as well as clinical evidences that have unequivocally established the potential of the glycolytic inhibitor, 2-deoxy-D-glucose, as an ideal adjuvant in enhancing the efficacy of radiotherapy and chemotherapy of tumors.

The International Symposium on Applications of 2-Deoxy-D-Glucose in the Management of Cancer held in Delhi, India, during November, 2006, brought together many basic and clinical scientists across the world working in this important area of oncology. This issue of Journal of Cancer Research and Therapeutics briefly summarizes the current status of knowledge in this area through some updated manuscripts of selected presentations made during the symposium. It is clear that more research is required to elucidate further the mechanisms underlying the enhanced glucose metabolism in tumors and its relationship with treatment resistance. However, what is more apparent is that the success of therapies using 2-DG seems to depend mainly on reducing toxicity to vital organs by optimal design of protocols using novel approaches. This will require a concerted effort of biomedical scientists and clinical oncologists working together closely with a common goal.

We thank all authors who have contributed to this issue and Journal of Cancer Research and Therapeutics for bringing out this special issue.