Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

(Federal University of Rio de Janeiro)

Faculdade de Farmácia

(School of Pharmacy)

Molecular Oncobiology Laboratory —LabOMol

 

Our group has been recently formed at Pharmaceutical Department of Pharmacy School in Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). The Molecular Oncobiology Laboratory - LabOMol - is concerned on bioenergetics, multidrug resistance and metabolic regulation. However, the central target is the search for new antineoplasic drugs.

Our focus is based on the curious, but common, property of cancer cells to present an altered glucose metabolism. The conversion of glucose into lactate in the presence of oxygen is known as aerobic glycolysis or ‘Warburg effect’. This metabolic phenotype is only observed in cancer, specially in human invasive tumors. Its persistency even under normoxia and its correlation to the invasiveness indicate that this metabolic profile confer a significant proliferative advantage during the somatic cancer evolution, and so must be a crucial component of malignance.

We believe that mechanisms capable to control the tumor accelerated glycolytic flux may impair neoplasic growth. Since normal tissues do not present the ‘Warburg effect’and are able to mantain their energetic needs through the oxidation of other substrates, the control of the tumoral glycolytic flux by xenobiotics is a potent therapeutic strategy to control cancer.