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Cancers 2011, 3(2), 2286-2301; doi:10.3390/cancers3022286
Article

Neoadjuvant Therapy in Patients with Pancreatic Cancer: A Disappointing Therapeutic Approach?

1,* , 2
,
3
,
1
,
1
 and
1
1 Department for General, Thoracic and Vascular Surgery and University Cancer Center University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus”, Technical University Dresden, Germany 2 Medical Department I and University Cancer Center, University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus”, Technical University Dresden, Germany 3 Department of Radiation Oncology and University Cancer Center University Hospital “Carl Gustav Carus”, Technical University Dresden, Germany
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 March 2011 / Revised: 9 April 2011 / Accepted: 26 April 2011 / Published: 9 May 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pancreatic Cancer)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [199 KB, 10 May 2011; original version 9 May 2011]

Abstract

Pancreatic cancer is a devastating disease. It is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death in Germany. The incidence in 2003/2004 was 16 cases per 100.000 inhabitants. Of all carcinomas, pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate, with one- and five-year survival rates of 25% and less than 5%, respectively, regardless of the stage at diagnosis. These low survival rates demonstrate the poor prognosis of this carcinoma. Previous therapeutic approaches including surgical resection combined with adjuvant therapy or palliative chemoradiation have not achieved satisfactory results with respect to overall survival. Therefore, it is necessary to evaluate new therapeutic approaches. Neoadjuvant therapy is an interesting therapeutic option for patients with pancreatic cancer. For selected patients with borderline or unresectable disease, neoadjuvant therapy offers the potential for tumor downstaging, increasing the probability of a margin-negative resection and decreasing the occurrence of lymph node metastasis. Currently, there is no universally accepted approach for treating patients with pancreatic cancer in the neoadjuvant setting. In this review, the most common neoadjuvant strategies will be described, compared and discussed.
Keywords: pancreas cancer; neoadjuvant therapy; adjuvant; radiotherapy; chemotherapy pancreas cancer; neoadjuvant therapy; adjuvant; radiotherapy; chemotherapy
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Zimmermann, C.; Folprecht, G.; Zips, D.; Pilarsky, C.; Saeger, H.D.; Grutzmann, R. Neoadjuvant Therapy in Patients with Pancreatic Cancer: A Disappointing Therapeutic Approach? Cancers 2011, 3, 2286-2301.

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