In honor of National Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month (November) and the World Pancreatic Cancer Day (November 21st), we’ve compiled important statistics about this disease and how we plan to treat it.
Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest forms of cancer. It is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the western world and is increasing in most industrialized countries. During 2019, 56,700 individuals will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the U.S. In Europe, more than 90,000 individuals will be diagnoses with the disease. Approximately 80% of these patients will die within the first year of diagnosis. More than 90% will die within 2 years of diagnosis. The overall survival rate is only 8%.
Pancreatic cancer is not usually diagnosed until the cancer is advanced and inoperable. There is no cure unless the cancer is surgically removed in its earliest stages. But the disease is operable in about only 10% of patients after being diagnosed. This is largely because pancreatic cancer shows no symptoms until it is at an advanced stage (stage 3 or 4) of development.
PharmaCyte’s therapy for cancer involves encapsulating genetically engineered human cells that convert an inactive chemotherapy drug into its active or “cancer-killing” form. For pancreatic cancer, these encapsulated cells are implanted in the blood supply to the patient’s tumor as close as possible to the site of the tumor. Once implanted, a chemotherapy drug that is normally activated in the liver (ifosfamide) is given intravenously at one-third the normal dose. The ifosfamide is carried by the circulatory system to where the encapsulated cells have been implanted. When the ifosfamide flows through pores in the capsules, the live cells inside act as a “bio-artificial liver” and activate the chemotherapy drug at the site of the cancer. This “targeted chemotherapy” has proven effective and safe to use in past clinical trials and results in little to no treatment related side effects.
To learn more about PharmaCyte’s pancreatic cancer treatment and how it works inside the body to treat locally advanced inoperable pancreatic cancer, we encourage you to watch the company’s documentary video complete with medical animations at: https://www.PharmaCyte.com/Cancer
Our goal is to satisfy a clear unmet medical need for patients with locally advanced, inoperable pancreatic cancer (LAPC) whose tumors no longer respond after 4-6 months of treatment with the chemotherapy combination of Abraxane® plus gemcitabine or FOLFIRINOX. For these patients, there is currently no effective therapy. We believe there will be no therapy comparable to our Cell-in-a-Box® plus low dose of ifosfamide combination therapy when it is used in this patient population.
We are in the late stages of preparing an Investigational New Drug application (IND) to conduct a clinical trial involving patients with LAPC whose tumors no longer respond to either of these two first line therapies. We hope to be in a position to file our IND in 2019. We are in the process of developing the final data we need to finish preparation of the IND by completing the second of two staggered and back-to-back manufacturing runs of our clinical trial product.
The gains we are making with our pancreatic cancer therapy are one more reason for pancreatic cancer patients and their families to #WageHope.