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Oxford researchers are studying metabolic changes in cancer and their relation to the tumour microenvironment to understand the impact on cancer cell growth and help develop new therapies.

A cancer cell surrounded by lymphocytes. 3D rendition. © Juan Gaertner, Shutterstock

Researchers are investigating a number of areas including metabolic reprogramming of cancer cells in response to environmental stress, cellular mechanisms involved in amino acid update and the effect of nutrient starvation on tumour growth and invasion. They are also exploring how drugs that target metabolic pathways, such as metformin, might be used therapeutically. Researchers use a range of experimental approaches and also clinical trials for these studies. In some cases, they are applying computational approaches to exploring global changes in metabolic pathways across tumour samples.