Project TitleUse of Ritonavir and Metformin for treatment of Multiple Myeloma
Track Code2012-150
Short Description

Novel approach to treating multiple myeloma and other cancers using existing therapeutics. 

#therapeutics #cancer 


Northwestern researchers have identified a novel approach to treating cancers that demonstrate high glucose metabolism, such as multiple myeloma (MM), using existing therapeutics. Elevated glucose metabolism is a key diagnostic and prognostic indicator in MM. GLUT4 plays a major role in this process and inhibition of this protein results in inhibition of cell growth and/or apoptosis. MM cells resistant to GLUT4 inhibition switch to utilize mitochondrial metabolism coupled to oxidative phosphorylation to maintain viability. The novel approach centers on repurposing HIV protease inhibitors (ritonavir/indinavir) that inhibit GLUT4 and using them in combination with metformin (GLUCOPHAGE) that can be used to target mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. 

Posted DateMay 28, 2014 5:59 PM


Malathy Shanmugam* 

Steven T. Rosen


Treatment of resistant glycolytic cancer 


  • Provides an effective method to target cancer metabolism 
  • Repurposes current therapeutics 
  • Combination therapy yields potent lethality across a variety of cancers in cell-based studies 


IP Status

A patent application has been filed. 

Contact Information

Michael Moore, PhD 
Invention Manager 
(p) 847.491.4645