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Dr. Simeone on the Importance of Mutational Analysis in Patients With Pancreatic Cancer

Diane Simeone, MD
Published: Friday, May 04, 2018



Diane Simeone, MD, director, Pancreatic Cancer Center, associate director, Translational Research, NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center, discusses the importance of mutational analysis in the treatment of patients with pancreatic cancer.

Physicians have typically relied on a patient’s family history when treating pancreatic cancer. However, in many patients with cancer, a complete family history is not taken. Physicians also find that following germline analysis of sporadic pancreatic cancer, 10% to 12% of patients with no family history have a germline mutation. That includes genes that are associated with other specific cancers. Simeone says that in her practice, a patient came in with sporadic pancreatic cancer that had a mutation in the p16 gene, which is associated with melanomas and pancreatic cancer, even though the individual had no history of melanoma.

Physicians are beginning to understand that the pattern of tumor evolution in some families that have these mutations is not always what is expected. Simeone says that physicians must understand the broad portfolio of mutations that exist. If the goal of therapy is to improve cancer outcomes, early detection and prevention has to be part of the equation, states Simeone.
 


Diane Simeone, MD, director, Pancreatic Cancer Center, associate director, Translational Research, NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center, discusses the importance of mutational analysis in the treatment of patients with pancreatic cancer.

Physicians have typically relied on a patient’s family history when treating pancreatic cancer. However, in many patients with cancer, a complete family history is not taken. Physicians also find that following germline analysis of sporadic pancreatic cancer, 10% to 12% of patients with no family history have a germline mutation. That includes genes that are associated with other specific cancers. Simeone says that in her practice, a patient came in with sporadic pancreatic cancer that had a mutation in the p16 gene, which is associated with melanomas and pancreatic cancer, even though the individual had no history of melanoma.

Physicians are beginning to understand that the pattern of tumor evolution in some families that have these mutations is not always what is expected. Simeone says that physicians must understand the broad portfolio of mutations that exist. If the goal of therapy is to improve cancer outcomes, early detection and prevention has to be part of the equation, states Simeone.
 



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