Each year approximately 10,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer – and almost the same number die of the disease, making it the fifth most common cause of cancer death. The problems are that by the time patients are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, the disease is simply too advanced for curative surgery and traditional chemotherapy and radiotherapy make almost no impact on progression. The last decade has seen many more scientists and doctors becoming interested in making a difference to the outlook for patients with this disease.
Using the latest technologies to unlock the cancer genome and to dissect the biology of the cancer cell has been hugely rewarding in terms what we have learned about the genes and molecules that drive the initiation and progression of pancreatic cancer. We believe that now is the time to translate these discoveries into advances in the clinic that will directly benefit patients with - or at risk of developing - pancreatic cancer.