Metabolomics, the newest of the “omics” sciences, has brought much excitement to the field of oncology as a potential new translational tool capable of bringing the molecular world of cancer care to the bedside. While still early in its development, metabolomics could alter the scope and role of surgery in the multidisciplinary treatment of cancer. This review examines potential roles of metabolomics in areas of early cancer detection, personalized therapeutics and tumorigenesis. J. Surg. Oncol. 2011; 103:451–459. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.