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Present Technology

What Is Pancreatic Cancer?

Pancreatic cancer is a disease in which malignant cells in the pancreas, an important organ of the digestive system, proliferate uncontrollably. Often going undetected until late stages, this cancer is notorious for its aggressiveness and speed. Because the pancreas is located behind the abdomen, pancreatic cancer can quickly metastasize to adjacent organs. 

Image by Moritz Kindler

The Current Treatments



A procedure where surgeons remove a solid tumor or tissue

Only 15% of pancreatic cancer patients can undergo  surgery as this procedure is limited to the premetastic stage. Additionally, out of the 15%, half of the patients experience serious complications of which 2% to 4% do not survive. 



A procedure where high energy radiation is utilized to kill malignant cells

Like surgery, radiation is only available for a small number of patients with local cancers. Radiation may damage the surrounding tissue of the treated area, increasing the probability of developing a second type of cancer.



A procedure where a combination of drugs is utilized to kill fast-growing cells

Currently, chemotherapy is the most widely used treatment for cancer. However, because surrounding tissue and blood vessels can block drug delivery, chemotherapies that effectively attack some cancers are ineffective for pancreatic cancer. Chemotherapy is not a targeted therapy and can kill both healthy and malignant cells. Thus, the patient may experience both severe side effects and potential relapse of the cancer.



A procedure where a patient's own immune system is utilized to fight the cancer

Checkpoint inhibitors are the most commonly used immunotherapy. These work by blocking interactions between the proteins on cytotoxic T cells and the PD-L1 protein on cancer cells. However, this treatment is often ineffective in treating pancreatic cancer because cancerous cells release immunosuppressive peptides which create an inhospitable environment for white blood cells to function, rendering checkpoint inhibitors useless. 

Lykosa Versus Current Treatments

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