"The public hears 'pancreatic cancer' and thinks there's little hope and there isn't much to do," says pancreatic cancer surgeon Charles Yeo, M.D., professor and chair of surgery at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. "The good news is, with new imaging techniques, better early detection, improved screening of high-risk groups, and new therapies on the horizon, we're actually making great progress when it comes to pancreatic cancer."
Pancreatic cancer, the fifth-leading cause of cancer death in this country, takes some 30,000 lives a year. Not too long ago, few lived for five years after diagnosis, says Dr. Yeo. Even now, only approximately 25 percent of those diagnosed with pancreatic cancer who undergo successful surgical "resection" of their disease live at least five years. But recent figures give new hope: Of those who live for five years after surgical resection, some 55 percent will be alive at least another five years.
On Friday, February 24, 2006, pancreatic cancer experts from around the country will gather at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson to discuss the latest in surgery, animal models, clinical trials, treatments and immunotherapy at this year's Scientific and Clinical Update on Pancreatic Cancer. Jefferson is hosting the conference at its Bluemle Life Sciences Building, 233 S. 10th Street. (The conclave begins at 8:20AM in Room 101.)
Among the guest speakers is Elizabeth Jaffee, M.D., the Dana and Albert "Cubby" Broccoli Professor in Oncology and Pathology at Johns Hopkins University, who will discuss one of the most exciting areas of pancreatic cancer research: immunotherapy, or using the body's own immune system to fight cancer.
Dr. Jaffee and her colleagues have recently reported encouraging early results of a vaccine for pancreatic cancer. After two years into a study of 60 pa
Contact: Steve Benowitz
Thomas Jefferson University