Invasion and metastasis are responsible for 90% of cancer-related mortality. An overview is presented of the issues and opportunities regarding the development of effective inhibitors of these phenomena. Our efforts in the discovery and (in vitro and in vivo) validation of synthetic chalcones as potent anti-invasive agents are summarised, taking into account various concerns regarding the suitability of the chalcone scaffold as a template for the development of bona fide pharmacological tools.

(BELG J MED ONCOL 2017;11(1):12–17)