In a recent interview, Dr. Afsaneh Barzi, assistant professor of clinical medicine at the University of Southern California Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, told you about existing and emerging new adjuvant therapies for patients with non-metastatic pancreatic cancer.
Gemcitabine is given to patients with pancreatic cancer as a standard practice to assess response. However, Barzi said that the patient’s response to gemcitabine was very poor and that many patients were unable to undergo surgery. The LAPACT trial investigated the combination therapy of gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel (Abraxane). Tests show that 36% of pancreatic cancer patients respond to treatment, and about 15% of pancreatic cancer patients can receive surgical treatment.
In addition, a meta-analysis of the FOLFIRINOX study of patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer showed that approximately 28% of pancreatic cancer patients were able to undergo surgery. Barzi explained that as chemotherapy becomes more effective, the likelihood of resection increases. Therefore, the patient’s resection should be evaluated accordingly. Barzi concluded that although most patients may still not be eligible for surgery, it is still worth evaluating patients to find patients who can undergo surgery after neoadjuvant therapy.