The sweet and sour of cancer: glycans as novel therapeutic targets

Nat Rev Cancer. 2005 Jul;5(7):526-42. doi: 10.1038/nrc1649.


A growing body of evidence supports crucial roles for glycans at various pathophysiological steps of tumour progression. Glycans regulate tumour proliferation, invasion, haematogenous metastasis and angiogenesis, and increased understanding of these roles sets the stage for developing pharmaceutical agents that target these molecules. Such novel agents might be used alone or in combination with operative and/or chemoradiation strategies for treating cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Proliferation
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / physiopathology
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / physiopathology
  • Neoplasms / immunology
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Neoplastic Processes
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / physiopathology
  • Polysaccharides / physiology*
  • Tumor Escape / immunology


  • Polysaccharides