Targeting iron to contrast cancer progression

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1 Scopus citations


An altered metabolism of iron fuels cancer growth, invasion, metastasis, and recurrence. Ongoing research in cancer biology is delineating a complex iron-trafficking program involving both malignant cells and their support network of cancer stem cells, immune cells, and other stromal components in the tumor microenvironment. Iron-binding strategies in anticancer drug discovery are being pursued in clinical trials and in multiple programs at various levels of development. Polypharmacological mechanisms of action, combined with emerging iron-associated biomarkers and companion diagnostics, are poised to offer new therapeutic options. By targeting a fundamental player in cancer progression, iron-binding drug candidates (either alone or in combination therapy) have the potential to impact a broad range of cancer types and to address the major clinical problems of recurrence and resistance to therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102315
JournalCurrent Opinion in Chemical Biology
StatePublished - Jun 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer
  • Chelator
  • Iron
  • Macrophage
  • Prochelator
  • Stemness
  • Tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry


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