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Pancreatic cancer chemo-resistance is driven by tumor phenotype rather than tumor genotype.


Swayden M, Iovanna J, Soubeyran P


Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is one of the deadliest forms of cancer. A major reason for this situation is the fact that these tumors are already resistant or become rapidly resistant to all conventional therapies. Like any transformation process, initiation and development of PDCA are driven by a well known panel of genetic alterations, few of them are shared with most cancers, but many mutations are specific to PDAC and are partially responsible for the great inter-tumor heterogeneity. Importantly, this knowledge has been inefficient in predicting response to anticancer therapy, or in establishing diagnosis and prognosis. Hence, the pre-existing or rapidly acquired resistance of pancreatic cancer cells to therapeutic drugs rely on other parameters and features developed by the cells and/or the micro-environment, that are independent of their genetic profiles. This review sheds light on all major phenotypic, non genetic, alterations known to play important roles in PDAC cells resistance to treatments and therapeutic escape.

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