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Immunotherapy updates in pancreatic cancer: are we there yet?

ABSTRACT: Pancreatic cancer is a lethal disease and remains one of the most resistant cancers to traditional therapies. Historically, chemotherapy or radiotherapy did not provide meaningful survival benefit in advanced pancreatic cancer. Gemcitabine and recently FOLFIRINOX (5-flourouracil, leucovorin, oxaliplatin and irinotecan) have provided some limited survival advantage in advanced pancreatic cancer. Targeted agents in combination with gemcitabine had not shown significant improvement in the survival. Current therapies for pancreatic cancer have their limitations; thus, we are in dire need of newer treatment options. Immunotherapy in pancreatic cancer works by recruiting and activating T cells that recognize tumor-specific antigens which is a different mechanism compared with chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Preclinical models have shown that immunotherapy and targeted therapies like vascular endothelial growth factor and epidermal growth factor inhibitors work synergistically. Hence, new immunotherapy and targeted therapies represent a viable option for pancreatic cancer. In this article, we review the vaccine therapy for pancreatic cancer.


PROVIDER: S-EPMC3539275 | BioStudies | 2013-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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