Johanna C. Bendell, MD
The incidence of pancreas cancer continues to rise in many countries.1
In 2017, an estimated 53,600 cases were diagnosed in the United States, representing an approximately 45% increase over the past decade.2,3
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), which is considered incurable, accounts for more than 90% of pancreatic cancer cases.4
Despite the improvement, 5-year and 10-year survival rates for PDAC remain low,4 and new, more effective therapies are urgently needed. The panel members reviewed data from recent studies of novel therapies being evaluated in PDAC and shared their perspectives on the significance of the findings for clinicians and patients.
Evolving Approach to Drug Development
PDAC is a highly heterogeneous disease, according to Winson Y. Cheung, MD, MPH, who said the focus of drug development should be on “enriching the right patient subsets and targeting therapies to these individual groups” instead of treating everyone as though they had the same cancer. Tanios Bekaii-Saab, MD, FACP, predicted that patients with PDAC eventually will stratified into subgroups based on the degree of microsatellite instability (MSI) or presence of mutations that affect DNA damage response (DDR). Precision targeting has the potential to improve outcomes in PDAC.
Novel Targets Emerging
PARP and ATR Inhibitors
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