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Real gains against pancreas cancer are not made by a single researcher in an isolated laboratory but rather by teams of investigators in many laboratories sharing ideas and information. Scientists and clinical investigators in the Skip Viragh Pancreas Cancer Center are dedicated to this multidisciplinary approach to research, discovery and treatment.
Elizabeth Jaffee, M.D.
More than a decade ago, researchers led by Elizabeth Jaffee, M.D., developed a novel vaccine to strengthen the immune system in pancreatic cancer patients. The vaccine, which is only available in clinical trials, uses irradiated pancreatic cancer cells that are incapable of growing, and have been genetically altered to secrete GM-CSF, a protein the body produces to help increase the number of white blood cells. It supercharges the immune system and causes immune cells to seek out and kill pancreas cancer cells throughout the body. Investigators also are studying the timing of vaccination as well as combining the vaccine with drug and radiation therapies to boost its tumor-killing capabilities, as well as studying peptides to create the first vaccines individualized to the unique molecular characteristics of each patient’s cancer. Read more in our magazine, Promise & Progress
Newsletter: "From Bench to Bedside"
Read Research News From Dr. Lei Zheng - "Cancer Vaccines and Immunotherapies"