The best treatment strategy for patients with locally advanced unresectable pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) remains the subject of considerable debate. This report presents a case of a 58-year-old woman with locally advanced unresectable PDAC who was treated with sequential FOLFIRINOX for 8 cycles followed by chemoradiation, and continues to show durable disease control 18 months later. The respective roles of systemic therapy and chemoradiation for locally advanced PDAC are discussed, including optimal sequencing of these modalities, recent improvements in chemotherapy, and the question of whether radiotherapy improves survival outcomes in this disease context.
Evolving Treatment Options for Locally Advanced Unresectable Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma
Pelin Cinar and Andrew H. Ko
Radiation Therapy in Operable and Locally Advanced Pancreatic Cancer
Andrew H. Ko and Christopher H. Crane
It is well established that the development of distant metastatic disease represents the dominant pattern of tumor recurrence/progression among patients with operable and locally advanced pancreatic cancer. However, the contribution of localized or locoregional tumor burden to pancreatic cancer–associated morbidity and mortality may be underappreciated, and therefore balancing competing considerations of systemic versus local disease control becomes important in therapeutic decision-making. The role of local therapies, particularly radiation therapy, has remained somewhat controversial in this disease context. Several phase II and III trials have sought to address the relative importance and role of radiation in both the localized and locally advanced settings, including the sequencing of this modality relative to systemic therapy and its optimal means of administration. However, differences and limitations in study design have produced mixed results, particularly in terms of the contribution of radiation to overall survival benefit. An emerging paradigm that makes conceptual sense and remains the subject of active investigation is to start with a defined period of systemic treatment, thus limiting radiation to the subset of patients who do not manifest with metastatic disease during initial therapy and are therefore most likely to benefit from local control.
Treatment of Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer
Andrew H. Ko and Margaret A. Tempero
Pancreatic adenocarcinoma represents the fourth-leading cause of cancer-related mortality in the United States. The vast majority of patients are diagnosed at advanced stages of the disease when surgery is no longer an option. For these patients, systemic therapy remains the mainstay of care. Although single-agent gemcitabine has remained the standard of care since its approval in 1997, improvements in patient outcomes may potentially be realized by (1) applying pharmacokinetic principles to optimize drug delivery, such as the administration of gemcitabine at a “fixed-dose rate” infusion; (2) combining gemcitabine with other cytotoxic agents for which evidence of synergy exists, such as platinum compounds; and (3) integrating novel targeted agents such as bevacizumab, erlotinib, and cetuximab into treatment paradigms, based on an increasing understanding of the molecular pathways that govern pancreatic tumor growth and maintenance. This article provides the evidence to support each of these approaches and highlights future directions in the management of metastatic pancreatic cancer.
Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma, Version 2.2017, NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology
Margaret A. Tempero, Mokenge P. Malafa, Mahmoud Al-Hawary, Horacio Asbun, Andrew Bain, Stephen W. Behrman, Al B. Benson III, Ellen Binder, Dana B. Cardin, Charles Cha, E. Gabriela Chiorean, Vincent Chung, Brian Czito, Mary Dillhoff, Efrat Dotan, Cristina R. Ferrone, Jeffrey Hardacre, William G. Hawkins, Joseph Herman, Andrew H. Ko, Srinadh Komanduri, Albert Koong, Noelle LoConte, Andrew M. Lowy, Cassadie Moravek, Eric K. Nakakura, Eileen M. O'Reilly, Jorge Obando, Sushanth Reddy, Courtney Scaife, Sarah Thayer, Colin D. Weekes, Robert A. Wolff, Brian M. Wolpin, Jennifer Burns, and Susan Darlow
Ductal adenocarcinoma and its variants account for most pancreatic malignancies. High-quality multiphase imaging can help to preoperatively distinguish between patients eligible for resection with curative intent and those with unresectable disease. Systemic therapy is used in the neoadjuvant or adjuvant pancreatic cancer setting, as well as in the management of locally advanced unresectable and metastatic disease. Clinical trials are critical for making progress in treatment of pancreatic cancer. The NCCN Guidelines for Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma focus on diagnosis and treatment with systemic therapy, radiation therapy, and surgical resection.
NCCN Guidelines Insights: Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma, Version 1.2019
Featured Updates to the NCCN Guidelines
Margaret A. Tempero, Mokenge P. Malafa, E. Gabriela Chiorean, Brian Czito, Courtney Scaife, Amol K. Narang, Christos Fountzilas, Brian M. Wolpin, Mahmoud Al-Hawary, Horacio Asbun, Stephen W. Behrman, Al B. Benson III, Ellen Binder, Dana B. Cardin, Charles Cha, Vincent Chung, Mary Dillhoff, Efrat Dotan, Cristina R. Ferrone, George Fisher, Jeffrey Hardacre, William G. Hawkins, Andrew H. Ko, Noelle LoConte, Andrew M. Lowy, Cassadie Moravek, Eric K. Nakakura, Eileen M. O’Reilly, Jorge Obando, Sushanth Reddy, Sarah Thayer, Robert A. Wolff, Jennifer L. Burns, and Griselda Zuccarino-Catania
The NCCN Guidelines for Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma discuss the diagnosis and management of adenocarcinomas of the exocrine pancreas and are intended to assist with clinical decision-making. These NCCN Guidelines Insights discuss important updates to the 2019 version of the guidelines, focusing on postoperative adjuvant treatment of patients with pancreatic cancers.
Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma, Version 2.2021, NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology
Margaret A. Tempero, Mokenge P. Malafa, Mahmoud Al-Hawary, Stephen W. Behrman, Al B. Benson III, Dana B. Cardin, E. Gabriela Chiorean, Vincent Chung, Brian Czito, Marco Del Chiaro, Mary Dillhoff, Timothy R. Donahue, Efrat Dotan, Cristina R. Ferrone, Christos Fountzilas, Jeffrey Hardacre, William G. Hawkins, Kelsey Klute, Andrew H. Ko, John W. Kunstman, Noelle LoConte, Andrew M. Lowy, Cassadie Moravek, Eric K. Nakakura, Amol K. Narang, Jorge Obando, Patricio M. Polanco, Sushanth Reddy, Marsha Reyngold, Courtney Scaife, Jeanne Shen, Charles Vollmer Jr., Robert A. Wolff, Brian M. Wolpin, Beth Lynn, and Giby V. George
Pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death among men and women in the United States. A major challenge in treatment remains patients’ advanced disease at diagnosis. The NCCN Guidelines for Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma provides recommendations for the diagnosis, evaluation, treatment, and follow-up for patients with pancreatic cancer. Although survival rates remain relatively unchanged, newer modalities of treatment, including targeted therapies, provide hope for improving patient outcomes. Sections of the manuscript have been updated to be concordant with the most recent update to the guidelines. This manuscript focuses on the available systemic therapy approaches, specifically the treatment options for locally advanced and metastatic disease.
Ampullary Adenocarcinoma, Version 1.2023, NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology
E. Gabriela Chiorean, Marco Del Chiaro, Margaret A. Tempero, Mokenge P. Malafa, Al B. Benson III, Dana B. Cardin, Jared A. Christensen, Vincent Chung, Brian Czito, Mary Dillhoff, Timothy R. Donahue, Efrat Dotan, Christos Fountzilas, Evan S. Glazer, Jeffrey Hardacre, William G. Hawkins, Kelsey Klute, Andrew H. Ko, John W. Kunstman, Noelle LoConte, Andrew M. Lowy, Ashiq Masood, Cassadie Moravek, Eric K. Nakakura, Amol K. Narang, Lorenzo Nardo, Jorge Obando, Patricio M. Polanco, Sushanth Reddy, Marsha Reyngold, Courtney Scaife, Jeanne Shen, Mark J. Truty, Charles Vollmer Jr, Robert A. Wolff, Brian M. Wolpin, Beth McCullough RN, Senem Lubin, and Susan D. Darlow
Ampullary cancers refer to tumors originating from the ampulla of Vater (the ampulla, the intraduodenal portion of the bile duct, and the intraduodenal portion of the pancreatic duct), while periampullary cancers may arise from locations encompassing the head of the pancreas, distal bile duct, duodenum, or ampulla of Vater. Ampullary cancers are rare gastrointestinal malignancies, and prognosis varies greatly based on factors such as patient age, TNM classification, differentiation grade, and treatment modality received. Systemic therapy is used in all stages of ampullary cancer, including neoadjuvant therapy, adjuvant therapy, and first-line or subsequent-line therapy for locally advanced, metastatic, and recurrent disease. Radiation therapy may be used in localized ampullary cancer, sometimes in combination with chemotherapy, but there is no high-level evidence to support its utility. Select tumors may be treated surgically. This article describes NCCN recommendations regarding management of ampullary adenocarcinoma.