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Cancer blog: Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine Gives New Hope

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Nov 18, 2005

Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine Gives New Hope

Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine Gives New Hope
A new immune-boosting vaccine gives new hope in increasing the survival of patients with pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest forms for which the treatment options are few.

As per the phase II trial results presented recently at a cancer meeting in Philadelphia, the 2 year survival of patients who had undergone surgery for the removal of their tumor increased from 42 percent to 76 percent by the use of this vaccine.

The vaccine has been designed for boosting up that the patient's immune responses to pancreatic cancer cells that might have been left behind after surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.

In the phase II trial, the vaccine was given to 60 patients whose pancreatic cancer was extracted. Their 1- and 2- years survival rate was found to be 88 percent and 76 percent respectively. Earlier studies have shown the corresponding survival rates to be 63 percent and 42 percent respectively when the vaccine was not given.

Study investigator Dr. Daniel Laheru, from Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in Baltimore has alerted in his comment to Reuters health that though the findings are potentially good news for patients with early stage disease, only about 15 to 20% of the cancerous patients fit into this category.

He said that at the time of presentation most of the patients are in their advanced stage of cancer. He also told that last year his team has completed a study making use of a similar vaccine in patients in their advanced stage of pancreatic cancer and the results have been submitted for publication recently.


Janet      Return to Cancer Blog Main


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Janet      


Cancer
We do not know the exact cause of many cancers. Many cancers like leukemia have no apparent cause. Some other types of cancers like lung cancers have identifiable causes like smoking in most cases. Lung cancer can occur in those who have never smoked in their life. It is hard to know in these cases what is causing that patients lung cancer. Factors that increase the risk of development of cancer is known as risk factors for cancer. These risk factors may be modifiable like smoking where a person can exert control or un-modifiable factors like age and gender. Smoking can cause cancers of the lungs, mouth, throat, bladder, kidneys and several other organs.

Cancer blog: Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine Gives New Hope

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