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Clarifying the headlines - "a six day cure for cancer"

Posted by: Comms 8 January 2014

You may have seen in the news recently, claims that pancreatic cancer will soon be 'killed in six days' by a new drug currently in development at the Cambridge Research Institute. While the research is a hopeful step towards a new and potentially effective treatment, the headlines can be somewhat misleading.

We spotted this brilliant blog post by Nick Peel at Cancer Research UK, which does a great job of explaining the work being undertaken by Professor Douglas Fearon and his team at the Cambridge Research Institute. While this research is, as Cancer Research UK very rightly point out, "another step forward" in harnessing the power of the body's own immune system, it is also research in its early stages, yet to be tested on humans.

As our CEO Alex Ford points out: "Currently, just 10 per cent of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer have surgery, which is the only cure.  Pancreatic cancer patients have not responded well to previous attempts to encourage the body to attack and kill a tumour.

"This research represents an exciting breakthrough - proving that it is possible for cancer attacking cells to get through to a pancreatic tumour.  Although this proof is still just at the laboratory stage, the method has been successful in killing pancreatic cancer cells.  This could provide opportunities for the development of new treatments in the future."

You can read the Cancer Research UK blog post in full here. If you have any questions about pancreatic cancer and treatment, contact our specialist nurses on the support line: 020353590799 or email support@pancreaticcancer.org.uk