Pancreatic Cancer Interception Research Team - Stand Up to Cancer
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Research Teams

Research  >  Research Portfolio  >  Dream Teams  >  Pancreatic Cancer Interception Research Team

SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation For Pancreatic Research Interception Research Team:
Developing Novel Approaches to Treat and Evaluate
Early Pancreatic Cancer

Grant Term: January 2018–December 2021

To intercept pancreatic cancer, the SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation For Pancreatic Research Interception Research Team is taking a comprehensive, two-pronged approach. Team members are testing novel and intensive preoperative treatments allowing doctors to achieve a complete surgical removal of a tumor and eradicate micrometastatic disease in more patients. They are also using organoids-cultured tumor cell colonies―to identify robust biomarkers of response to help guide the choice of standard therapies and immunotherapies.

ABOUT THIS TEAM’S RESEARCH

The SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation Pancreatic Cancer Interception Research Team aims to intercept pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma through a comprehensive approach that tests intensive preoperative treatments allowing doctors to achieve successful surgery and eradicate micrometastatic disease in more patients, and through the use of organoids to identify robust biomarkers of response to therapy.

Pancreatic cancer can sometimes be cured by surgery, but this is not always successful. Outcomes can be improved by intensive preoperative therapy with FOLFIRINOX, a chemotherapy regimen that combines the drugs 5-fluorouracil, leucovorin, irinotecan hydrochloride, and oxaliplatin. Through a clinical trial, the team is evaluating the addition of losartan, a drug that may enhance the efficacy of FOLFIRINOX. Furthermore, since preliminary data suggest that losartan therapy and radiation therapy alter the immune microenvironment, the team will add immunotherapy to determine if this strategy can provide additional benefit.

The team is also using organoids―tiny colonies of living cells obtained from patients’ tumors prior to starting treatment―to determine if they can be used to predict patients’ response to FOLFIRINOX and other therapies.

This Research Team is part of the SU2C Cancer Interception Initiative, an approach that looks for ways to actively intervene in the formation of the disease rather than treating it only after it is fully developed, and is part of the Pancreatic Cancer Collective portfolio of research.

This team is also part of the Pancreatic Cancer Collective portfolio of research.

MEET THE TEAM

The top scientists and researchers on the SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation For Pancreatic Research Interception Research Team come from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines, which leads them to great insights upon collaboration. Learn more about the SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation For Pancreatic Research Interception Research Team.

Team Members

David P. Ryan, MD
Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
Team Leader

Alec C. Kimmelman, MD, PhD
Perlmutter Cancer Center at NYU Langone
Co-leader

Richard Burkhart, MD
Johns Hopkins University
Principal Investigator

Joseph M. Herman, MD, MSc
MD Anderson Cancer Center
Principal Investigator

Wells Messersmith, MD
University of Colorado Cancer Center
Principal Investigator

Robert A. Ettl
Harvard Management Company
Advocate

Regina Pyle
Massachusetts General Hospital
Advocate

Carole Seigel
Massachusetts General Hospital
Advocate

Leilana Ly
Massachusetts General Hospital
Project Manager

“We want to intercept the disease when it is still localized and make patients good candidates for surgery. Then the surgeons can go in and get it all out so there is no cancer left behind.”

David P. Ryan, MD
Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

TEAM PROGRESS UPDATES

Stand Up To Cancer’s research projects are designed to foster collaborative, swift translational research. The hallmarks of these efforts include rigorous application and selection procedures, sufficient funding to allow scientists to focus on the objectives of the grant, and reviews by senior scientists every six months. These reviews help the investigators capitalize on the latest findings, address potential roadblocks, and collaboratively evolve as the science requires. Please click on the link to see summaries of research results so far for the SU2C–Lustgarten Foundation For Pancreatic Research Interception Research Team.

TEAM PROGRESS UPDATES

PUBLICATIONS

This team started its work in January 2018. Links to publications will be posted when they are available.

CLINICAL TRIALS REFERRALS

Cancer clinical trials allow researchers to study innovative and potentially life-saving new treatments. The goal is to find treatments that are better than what’s currently available; in fact, the therapies offered to today’s cancer patients were almost all studied and made possible by people participating in clinical trials. But many cancer clinical trials aren’t completed because not enough people take part.

At StandUpToCancer.org/ClinicalTrials, you’ll find information and answers to common questions about clinical trials. Learn more and talk to your doctor to see if a clinical trial may be the best choice for you.

You can also connect with EmergingMed, a free and confidential clinical trial matching service that provides access to a vast database to help you identify the clinical trials that might be right for you or your loved one.

LEARN MORE