Dr. Richards on Genetic Testing in Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer

Donald A. Richards, MD, PhD
Published: Monday, Oct 21, 2019



Donald A. Richards, MD, PhD, medical oncologist, Texas Oncology, discusses the use of genetic testing in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer.

Results from the phase III POLO trial showed a significant improvement in progression-free survival with olaparib (Lynparza) maintenance therapy in patients with advanced germline BRCA-mutated disease who did not progress on platinum-based chemotherapy. As such, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines recommend to test patients with advanced metastatic pancreatic cancer for BRCA1/2 mutations.

With these recommendations in place, genetic testing is becoming more widespread in pancreatic cancer. However, the role of testing for somatic mutations is not as well defined, says Richards. Additionally, several challenges have made testing difficult to adopt routinely, including the availability of tissue and cost of mutational analysis, concludes Richards.
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Donald A. Richards, MD, PhD, medical oncologist, Texas Oncology, discusses the use of genetic testing in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer.

Results from the phase III POLO trial showed a significant improvement in progression-free survival with olaparib (Lynparza) maintenance therapy in patients with advanced germline BRCA-mutated disease who did not progress on platinum-based chemotherapy. As such, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines recommend to test patients with advanced metastatic pancreatic cancer for BRCA1/2 mutations.

With these recommendations in place, genetic testing is becoming more widespread in pancreatic cancer. However, the role of testing for somatic mutations is not as well defined, says Richards. Additionally, several challenges have made testing difficult to adopt routinely, including the availability of tissue and cost of mutational analysis, concludes Richards.

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