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Update on adjuvant trials for pancreatic cancer.

Backlund DC, Berlin JD, Parikh AA
Surg Oncol Clin N Am. 2010 19 (2): 391-409

PMID: 20159521 · DOI:10.1016/j.soc.2009.11.003

Adjuvant therapy for pancreatic cancer remains a controversial topic, with a paucity of randomized controlled trials in this area and various limitations in the trials that have been conducted to date, leaving many questions as to a true "standard of care" for patients with resectable or potentially resectable disease. Several large and well-conducted phase 3 trials have reported results recently and have helped to solidify the role of chemotherapy, with either 5-fluorouracil or gemcitabine, as an effective intervention in the adjuvant setting. The role of radiotherapy remains unclear, but it does seem to be feasible and safe, and there are trials in development that may shed more light on this question. Many small trials have pointed to the potential utility of neoadjuvant strategies in selecting the patients who are most likely to benefit from surgery and in improving outcomes by providing systemic therapy early on. Larger trials are ongoing in hopes that they will give more definitive answers as to when this strategy should be used. It is hoped that trials using novel agents, either alone or in combination with more traditional therapies, will better define the best strategy for improving outcomes in patients with resectable disease.

MeSH Terms (11)

Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols Chemotherapy, Adjuvant Cisplatin Clinical Trials as Topic Combined Modality Therapy Deoxycytidine Fluorouracil Humans Neoadjuvant Therapy Pancreatic Neoplasms Radiotherapy, Adjuvant

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