Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a malignant neoplasm and is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related deaths in US with a 5-year survival rate less than 5%. Surgery is the only potentially curative treatment even though the result is a palliation in the majority of cases and the majority of lesions are lately diagnosed. Progression from normal pancreatic epithelium to metastatic disease is now a well-characterized sequence of events. Research has shown that pancreatic cancer is fundamentally a genetic disease with several biological pathway implied in apoptosis, cell proliferation and self-sufficiency in growth signaling, but how those findings could be applied in daily clinical practice remain unknown. Several studies tried to characterize diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers in PDAC to make it possible an earlier diagnosis, guarantee a more effective treatment and reach a better prognosis even though the results remain contrasting. The main limit of the published researches is the small number of patients studied, but even the heterogeneity of the used methods of analysis. Examining critically the research of the last years future trials may be addressed toward a translational models integrating "the bench and the bed" with the clinical experience and drive the basic research toward the clinical applications.
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