Mayo Clinic researchers decode origin of inflammation-driven pancreatic cancer
Researchers at Mayo Clinic in Florida have revealed the process by which chronic inflammation of the pancreas, pancreatitis, morphs into pancreatic cancer. They say their findings point to ways to identify pancreatitis patients at risk of pancreatic cancer and to potential drug therapies that might reverse the process. The study, published online in The Journal of Cell Biology, maps how inflammation pushes acinar cells in the pancreas — those that produce digestive enzymes — to transform into duct-like cells. As these cells change, they can acquire mutations that can result in further progression to pancreatic cancer.
Among the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 67 as Cancer Centers. Largely based in research universities, these facilities are home to many of the NCI-supported scientists who conduct a wide range of intense, laboratory research into cancer’s origins and development. The Cancer Centers Program also focuses on trans-disciplinary research, including population science and clinical research. The centers’ research results are often at the forefront of studies in the cancer field.