Advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma: A review of current treatment strategies and developing therapies

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Abstract

Pancreatic adenocarcinoma is one of the deadliest solid malignancies. A large proportion of patients are diagnosed with locally advanced or metastatic disease at the time of presentation and, unfortunately, this severely limits the number of patients who can undergo surgical resection, which offers the only chance for cure. Recent therapeutic advances for patients with advanced pancreatic cancer have extended overall survival, but prognosis still remains grim. Given that traditional chemotherapy is ineffective in curing advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma, current research is taking a multidirectional approach in the hopes of developing more effective treatments. This article reviews the major clinical trial data that is the basis for the current chemotherapy regimens used as first- and second-line treatments for advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma. We also review the current ongoing clinical trials, which include the use of agents targeting the oncogenic network signaling of K-Ras, agents targeting the extracellular matrix, and immune therapies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-84
Number of pages17
JournalTherapeutic Advances in Medical Oncology
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2015

Keywords

  • chemotherapy
  • immune therapy
  • metastatic pancreatic cancer
  • stroma
  • targeted agents

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