Hexose Transporters in Cancer: From Multifunctionality to Diagnosis and Therapy

Carolina Echeverría, Francisco Nualart, Luciano Ferrada, Gary J. Smith, Alejandro S. Godoy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Cancer cells increase their metabolic activity by enhancing glucose uptake through overexpression of hexose transporters (Gluts). Gluts also have the capacity to transport other molecules besides glucose, including fructose, mannose, and dehydroascorbic acid (DHA), the oxidized form of vitamin C. The majority of research studies in this field have focused on the role of glucose transport and metabolism in cancer, leaving a substantial gap in our knowledge of the contribution of other hexoses and DHA in cancer biology. Here, we summarize the most recent advances in understanding the role that the multifunctional transport capacity of Gluts plays in biological and clinical aspects of cancer, and how these characteristics can be exploited in the search for novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)198-211
Number of pages14
JournalTrends in Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd


  • cancer metabolism
  • dehydroascorbic acid
  • fructose
  • glucose
  • glucose transporters
  • mannose


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