The CDK inhibitors in cancer research and therapy

  • Jonas CicenasEmail author
  • Mindaugas Valius


Chemical compounds that interfere with an enzymatic function of kinases are useful for gaining insight into the complicated biochemical processes in mammalian cells. Cyclin-dependent kinases (CDK) play an essential role in the control of the cell cycle and/or proliferation. These kinases as well as their regulators are frequently deregulated in different human tumors. Aberrations in CDK activity have also been observed in viral infections, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s diseases, ischemia and some proliferative disorders. This led to an intensive search for small-molecule CDK inhibitors not only for research purposes, but also for therapeutic applications. Here, we discuss seventeen CDK inhibitors and their use in cancer research or therapy. This review should help researchers to decide which inhibitor is best suited for the specific purpose of their research. For this purpose, the targets, commercial availability and IC50 values are provided for each inhibitor. The review will also provide an overview of the clinical studies performed with some of these inhibitors.


CDK Kinases Small-molecule inhibitors Cancer Cell cycle 


Conflict of interest

Authors state no conflict of interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medicine, Institute of AnatomyUniversity of FribourgFribourgSwitzerland
  2. 2.MAP Kinase ResourceBernSwitzerland
  3. 3.Department of Developmental BiologyInstitute of BiochemistryVilniusLithuania

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