A new combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy shows promise in treating metastatic pancreatic cancer.

A new combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy shows promise in treating metastatic pancreatic cancer.

A new combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy has shown promising results in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer, according to a study by the Val d’Hebron Oncology Institute. The research found that combining an antibody called CD40 IgG1 with first-line chemotherapy has “significant” clinical benefits in patients with advanced pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, one of the most aggressive cancers affecting this organ.

The data from this study were recently published in The Lancet Oncology and were presented today at the European Society for Medical Oncology Congress by researcher Teresa Macarola, an oncologist at the University Hospital of Val d’Hebron.

Study results indicate that the combination of these two treatments shows an objective response rate of 40% along with a median duration of response of 12.5 months and a median overall survival of 14.3 months.

“These are really promising results, especially considering that we currently do not have effective treatment strategies for these patients, so it is imperative to continue looking for new opportunities,” said study leader Macarola.

As they remember from Val d’Hebron, immunotherapy has revolutionized oncology in recent decades. It involves activating the patient’s own immune system against cancer cells. However, it is a technique that does not currently work for all patients, nor for all types of tumors.

One of the main challenges to achieving therapeutic efficacy in pancreatic cancer is that it represents an immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment, preventing the proper penetration of therapeutic molecules and immune cells. For this reason, scientists say, it is essential to continue research into new immunotherapy strategies that enable the activation of the patient’s own immune response against cancer cells.

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