The Warburg effect and glucose-derived cancer theranostics

Rakesh K. Tekade, Xiankai Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


Tumor cells are known for their propensity to proliferate uncontrollably and generate multitudes of metastatic masses at the advanced stages of cancer. During this progression, tumor cells switch their energy source from mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation to a glucose-dependent glycolytic pathway, despite the availability of oxygen. Consequently, tumor cells increase their metabolic rates as well as glucose uptake to maintain their proliferation. This atypical metabolic phenomenon is known as the Warburg effect, which has been recognized as a hallmark of cancer and serves as a promising target for diagnosis and therapy of cancer. In this review, we summarize the current advances toward the development of glucose-derived therapeutic and diagnostic agents (theranostics) of cancer. The Warburg effect is a well-recognized hallmark of cancer that serves as a promising target for the development of therapeutic and diagnostic (theranostic) agents for cancer. Here, we summarize the current advances in this field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1637-1653
Number of pages17
JournalDrug Discovery Today
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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