Hopeful new treatment for deadly pancreatic cancer

  • 2 Min To Read
  • a year ago

A new study combining radiation and immunotherapy has shown early promise against pancreatic cancer, offering hope for those living with the often-lethal disease. The research published in the journal Cancer Cell showed that the treatment regimen was able to destroy pancreatic tumors and stop the cancer from spreading in animals. Immunotherapy is a form of cancer treatment that helps a person's immune system fight the cancer, while radiation therapy deploys high doses of radiation to destroy cancer cells and tumors. Pancreatic cancer does not usually respond well to immunotherapy, but researchers found that a new type of antibody treatment was able to boost the number of immune cells capable of fighting cancerous ones. The tumor-fighting effect was magnified when used alongside radiation therapy, enabling them to focus on eliminating "bad" cells within the immune system. The approach worked throughout the body, which is important for cancers that have begun to spread, or metastasize, which is often the case when pancreatic cancer is discovered. The researchers hope to conduct clinical trials using the technique, which could change the way doctors treat pancreatic patients in the near future.

Pancreatic cancer is the 10th most commonly diagnosed cancer in the U.S. and the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths. It has the lowest survival rate of any group of cancers, with around 12% of people living at least five years after their diagnosis. One of the key reasons for this is that it often goes undetected until it is in its later stages and has started to spread throughout the body. At this point, surgical removal may not be viable, and treatments that effectively treat it are very limited, though experts are working on developing new ones and advancing others like immunotherapy. The study is still in the early stages, and it was conducted in animals, meaning that it is a long way from widespread use in humans. However, the research is promising, and the researchers said they hope to conduct clinical trials using the technique. The finding could change the way doctors treat pancreatic patients and stop the disease from coming back.


More from Press Rundown