Pancreatic cancer is a devastating disease. By the time of diagnosis, pancreatic cancer is usually well-advanced in the majority of patients which means they are unable to have surgery. If diagnosed at an early stage, surgery is possible to remove the pancreatic tumour. This, in combination with specialised treatment such as chemotherapy, is shown to improve survival and quality of life. In the past decade, the number of new patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer has gradually increased in the UK and is likely to continue rising. Yet, only around 10% of cases are diagnosed at an early-stage. Identifying the population at risk as well as early detection of the disease may help to improve patient management and extend survival.
Previous studies have identified a number of factors, including age over 55, diabetes, pancreatitis, smoking, alcohol and obesity, which may increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. Most of this research focused on studying the Caucasian population in Europe or in the USA. As such, the risk factors for pancreatic cancer in an ethnically diverse community, such as that in London or the UK in general, have not been sufficiently explored. To address this gap, our study team at Barts Cancer Institute has desgined this study focusing on the multi-ethnic population in East London. The study aims to evaluate known risk factors of pancreatic cancer, and identify novel ones, in the target population.
The research will contribute to identifying a high-risk population of potential pancreatic cancer patients for targeted screening. This could speed up diagnosis and further down the line, facilitate the development of targeted treatments for pancreatic cancer. The success of the project will potentially open the door for conducting the study on a national scale.
This work is currently funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC) through Health Data Research UK (HDR UK). This website has been developed and is maintained by the study team at Barts Cancer Institute. Further informationabout the study available on the adjoining tabs or by emailing to the Chief Investigator.