In February, the European Commission opened a consultation on its Europe Beating Cancer Plan. Inviting all citizens to bring their expertise to the table in order to propose a Plan that, according to the Commission’s own words, “puts European citizens at the centre”.

As a multi-stakeholder Platform, PCE is rich from a variety of point of views and perspectives on life with pancreatic cancer. The Platform has developed a contribution to be shared with the European Commission in order to ensure that pancreatic cancer and its current challenges are taken into account in the next structuring effort against cancer at the European level.

From diagnosis to post-therapy life, we have worked on a contribution that encompasses all the stages of living with pancreatic cancer, in hope of improving every stage for patients, their families and their carers. We also ensured to remind the Commission of the major funding effort that is necessary for research, as well as of the need for EU Registries on pancreatic cancer, in line with the core claims of PCE since its creation.

Pancreatic Cancer Europe will follow with attention the next developments of this Plan and keep its advocacy actions up and running to always push for the consideration of pancreatic cancer in public policies across Europe.

Click here to read the Europe's Beating Cancer Plan with a roadmap review and feedback propositions

Pancreatic Cancer Europe is delighted to announce a new partnership with The Innovative Partnership for Action Against Cancer (iPAAC) Joint Action. The platform brings together over 24 associated partners across Europe, and aims to develop innovative approaches to advances in cancer control and further the development of cancer prevention. IPAAC's work is divided into 10 work packages, PCE will be contributing to work package 7 Cancer Information and Registries and work package 8: Challenges in Cancer Care. We are excited to contribute to the work of iPAAC Joint Action and we are looking forward to what this fruitful partnership will bring!

This Lancet Oncology study looked at survival rates of seven cancers (oesophagus, stomach, colon, rectum, pancreas, lung, and ovary)in seven high-income countries (Australia, Canada, Denmark, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, and the UK), analysing patient data of almost 4 million people diagnosed between 1995 and 2014. The study found that that cancer survival rates are continuing to increase across high-income countries; over 1995–2014, 1-year and 5-year net survival increased in each country across almost all cancer types. Pancreatic cancer had the lowest survival among the studied cancer sites, although survival increases were observed over time in most countries except New Zealand.

You can check out the paper online here

The Annual General Meeting of Pancreatic Cancer Europe took place in Barcelona, Spain, at the occasion of the World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer. The general assembly meeting aimed to give an overview of the achievements in first half of 2019, and to discuss the strategic objectives and the actions identified in the long-term vision developed by the Board of PCE in April. The present members of the Platform were able to express their expectations for the Platform and explain how they will be able to further contribute to its development. Members will once again be called to participate to an Extraordinary Annual General Meeting in October. More details will be communicated soon to all PCE members. Thanks again for the successful AGM and looking forward to seeing all members next year for the 2020 AGM.

In April 2019 took place the Pancreatic Cancer Advocacy Workshop (PACAW) in Rome. Members of the Platform were invited to join the Heads of the “Awareness and Diagnosis” and “National Support” workstream, Ali Stunt and Antonella Cardone, to learn the know-how of designed advocacy strategies in their countries. To this occasion, Members were offered to create a strategy to compete for the Pancreatic Cancer Advocacy Workshop award. Two very successful proposals were submitted by our Scottish and Polish members, Pancreatic Cancer Scotland and EuropaColon Poland. EuropaColon Poland finally won the award, and the reward, a one-year support from the PCE Secretariat to the implementation of their national activities, based on mental health in cancer patients and adopting a psycho-oncological approach to cancer care. Congratulations to both groups for their submission, thank you to all the members who participated to the Workshop and see you next year for a third edition of the PACAW!

Thanks to support from the European pancreatic Club, PCE’s Research Workstream was able to organise, for the first time, the creation of a Short-Stay Scientific Award (S3A) for Early-Career Investigators (ECI). The S3A award provides a grant of 3000€ for a successful researcher to travel to a different country and stay for up to 3 months in a foreign research institution. The winner of this year is Marina Cihova, a Slovakian researcher at the Slovak Academy of Sciences, within the Cancer Research Institute. Marina will go spend a month in Madrid, Spain at the Ramon y Cajal Health Research Institute. There she will work to develop relevant pre-clinical study models of patient-derived pancreatic tumour organoids. This research project aims to improve the diagnostic capacities for pancreatic cancer. The award, which is designed to foster collaboration and cooperation between research teams all over Europe, was attributed to Marina Cihova during this year’s Annual General Meeting. We wish her all the best for her stay in Madrid which will take place in September!

Pancreatic Cancer Europe had the opportunity to host a booth at the 51st European Pancreatic Club Meeting in Bergen, Norway, on June 26-29, and at the 21st World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer in Barcelona, Spain. During the meeting in Bergen, Nuria Malats, Sorin Barbu and Alfredo Carrato, Board members of the PCE association, each gave insightful presentations and Peer Bork gave a lecture on the gut microbiome and pancreatic cancer, which was chaired by Nuria Malats and sponsored by Pancreatic Cancer Europe. The beautiful city of Bergen was the perfect place for this meeting. Next year, the 52nd EPC Meeting will take place in Paris, and PCE of course looks forward to being represented again by the Secretariat and its Board. PCE was also represented at ESMO GI. PCE officially endorsed the event. Amid sponsors and other umbrella organisations such as Digestive Cancers Europe (DiCE), PCE was able to push forward the cause of pancreatic cancer. We had two very successful meetings which led to many more passionate people joining the platform at the European and national level. We sincerely thank EPC and ESMO GI for providing PCE with the opportunity to advocate for pancreatic cancer at their meetings.

Pancreatic Cancer Europe was founded to bring the fight against pancreatic cancer to the European Union through a single voice. By enabling collaboration on research, registries and by raising awareness we have one goal: decrease the severe mortality of pancreatic cancer.

The European Union must have a central role in this duty. In order to ensure action by the European Union, a strong commitment by all the European institutions and policymakers is needed.

In May 2019, European citizens will elect our representatives in the European Parliament. These elections are a key moment for pancreatic cancer patients: the next European Parliament has the opportunity to ensure that the European Union delivers against pancreatic cancer.

To enable a strong commitment by the future policymakers, Pancreatic Cancer Europe is launching the Pancreatic Cancer 2019 Elections Manifesto. By signing the Manifesto, candidates to the European Elections from all countries and political parties will show their commitment to ensure that the European Union takes appropriate action against pancreatic cancer, by taking 8 key actions.

We invite all candidates to show their commitment and share the Pancreatic Cancer 2019 Elections Manifesto. Together we can tackle this deadly disease.

Click here to see who has endorsed the Pancreatic Cancer 2019 Elections Manifesto.

To close the month of November dedicated to raising awareness about pancreatic cancer, pancreatic surgeon Dr. Nouredin Messaoudi presented to a group of 150 general practitioners (GP’s) the symptoms and risks of the disease, as well as the urgent need for earlier detection. This event was organized at the Europe Hospitals in Brussels (Belgium) to support GPs and give them the tools to diagnose and refer patients promptly. “Increasing awareness of symptoms and improving earlier diagnosis is crucial in the fight against pancreatic cancer, Dr. Messaoudi explains, as early detection of pancreatic cancer greatly increases the number of patients amenable for potentially curative surgery.”

Please reach out to Dr. Messaoudi at n.messaoudi@cdle.be if you’re interested in knowing more about his actions in Brussels.

On this 15th of November, 2018, all patients, families and communities unite for World Pancreatic Cancer Day. This day, we celebrate the common work through awareness-raising, research and policies to fight pancreatic cancer. We also want to dedicate this day to those who suffer from this terrible cancer. We at Pancreatic Cancer Europe want to support this effort and think of all the families in need of European and national action. Our work in the past months has led to the creation of several tools and documents which are designed to foster new policies addressing this disease.

Our inequality report presents the state of pancreatic cancer across Europe, with angles on diagnosis, research, national policies and unmet needs. It emphasises the inequalities that exist in Europe and the need for a harmonised policy to offer the same chances to all European citizens. Our heatmap, accessible online, also presents in an interactive way those inequalities by giving key information specific to each country. So far, eight countries are referenced, but we hope to add more, thanks to your help.

By 2020, pancreatic cancer will be the second killer cancer in Europe. Today should be about thinking to the future and how we can reverse the trend of increasing mortality and incidence in order to avoid this fearful prediction. Every action towards a new policy, every conversation to raise awareness, every breakthrough in diagnosing pancreatic cancer is a new step taken in our fight”.

For more information please contact us directly at Pancreatic Cancer Europe.

On Wednesday, October 10th of 2018, the Digestive Health Group of the European Parliament organised, together with Pancreatic Cancer Europe (PCE) and United European Gastroenterology (UEG), the event “Putting pancreatic cancer on the map – what we have and what we need”. Hosted by MEP Pavel Poc, the event gathered key actors and decision-makers to exchange on pancreatic cancer and the inequalities in related healthcare across Europe and inside countries. We were honoured by the participation of MEP Pavel Poc as well as MEPs Marian-Jean Marinescu and Lieve Wierinck, who both gave insightful speeches.

Several experts also took their turn to give compelling keynotes: 

  • Lydia Makaroff, European Cancer Patients Coalition (ECPC), board member of PCE
  • Pr. Matthias Löhr, Public Affairs Committee in UEG
  • Alison Stunt, Pancreatic Cancer Action UK and board member of PCE
  • Pr. Miroslav Ryska, Charles University and Central Military Hospital, Prague
  • Mariella de Bausset, Secretary General of the Foundation A.R.CA.D


You can find the extended press release here.

You can find the minutes of the event here.

Pancreatic Cancer Europe is proud to endorse the ESMO World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer 2019. The ESMO World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer is the premier global event in the field – encompassing malignancies affecting every component of the gastrointestinal tract and aspects related to the care of patients with gastrointestinal cancer, including screening, diagnosis and the latest management options for common and uncommon tumours. ESMO GI will take place in Barcelona, Spain – from 3 to 6 July 2019.

More information on their website www.worldgicancer.com

Pancreatic Cancer Europe has collaborated with Pan European Networks: Health which provided a very nice portrait of the Platform, our identity and our actions to tackle the disease. Our Board Member, Dr Nuria Malats had the opportunity to present the Research Work Stream initiatives and the specific challengers the research on pancreatic cancer is facing. Please find the article on the website of the Pan here.. The article will also appear in issue 4 of Health Europa Quarterly, which will be published in February.

The new PCE member Dutch Pancreatic Cancer is a member of the European Consortium of Minimally Invasive Pancreatic Surgery (E-MIPS).

E-MIPS has recently organized the DIPLOMA trial, which is coordinated by the AMC Amsterdam and University Hospital Southampton.The primary aim of the E-MIPS is to perform a pan-European randomized controlled trial of minimally invasive (either laparoscopic or robot-assisted) versus open distal pancreatectomy for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) in the pancreatic body or tail, with the aim to enhance patient’s recovery and lessen the impact of surgery without compromising oncological outcomes. In total 35 centers from 11 countries and 258 patients (129 minimally invasive and 129 open) are expected to participate in this trial.

Pancreatic Cancer Europe strongly supports high quality clinical trials conducted on pancreatic cancer, which are more than needed to improve outcomes and processes throughout the treatment pathway.

More information about the E-MIPS and DIPLOMA trial on their website: e-mips.org/diploma.

Pancreatic cancer has one of the worst prognoses, with a five-year survival rate of 9 percent, because of the lack of telltale symptoms or non-invasive screening tools to catch a tumor before it spreads.

University of Washington researchers have developed the BiliScreen app, which allow people to easily screen a susspected pancreatic cancer and other diseases - by snapping a smartphone selfie. BiliScreen uses a smartphone camera, computer vision algorithms and machine learning tools to detect increased bilirubin levels in a person's sclera, or the white part of the eye.

Indeed, one of the earliest symptoms of pancreatic cancer, as well as other diseases, is jaundice, a yellow discoloration of the skin and eyes caused by a buildup of bilirubin in the blood. So the ability to detect signs of jaundice when bilirubin levels are minimally elevated - but before they're visible to the naked eye - could enable an entirely new screening program for at-risk individuals.

In an initial clinical study of 70 people, the BiliScreen app correctly identified cases of concern 89.7% of the time, compared to the blood test currently used.

In contrast with others methods of screening, BiliScreen does not require access to a health care professional.

This app is a very interesting illustration of digital preventing tools, easy-to-use, and non-invasive, that could be efficient to determine whether someone ought to consult a doctor for further testing.

This new app was presented on the 13 of September at Ubicomp 2017, the Association for Computing Machinery's International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing.

Sources:
www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/08/170828140716.htm

“On Wednesday 12th April 2017, EUPancreas (COST Action) and Pancreatic Cancer Europe gathered key pancreatic cancer research experts, clinicians, private domain representatives, health policy makers, and patient advocates during a meeting in Brussels.

This very first “Multistakeholder Brainstorming meeting” was organized around the belief that researchers, clinicians, patient representatives, pharma and biotech companies, policy makers, European institutions, in a joint collaboration, have a fundamental role to play in pancreatic cancer research.

Following an initiative from our Board Member, Dr. Nuria Malats, the exchanges aimed to propose concrete solutions in favour of research on pancreatic cancer in Europe. Indeed, we think it is time for EU institutions, Members of the European Parliament and national ministries to trigger real change in research, to further improve patient outcomes and survival rates.

The result of the exchanges are precise priorities for research on pancreatic cancer, that will be sent to European policy makers.

Please find here the minutes of the discussions and the list of participants. Please do not hesitate to contact the secretariat if you have any question or need more information.

04.05.2017

Pancreatic Cancer Europe is proud to endorse ESMO World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer 2017. The ESMO World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer is the premier global event in the field – encompassing malignancies affecting every component of the gastrointestinal tract and aspects related to the care of patients with gastrointestinal cancer, including screening, diagnosis and the latest management options for common and uncommon tumours. ESMO GI will take place in Barcelona, Spain – from the 28 June to the 1st of July 2017.

More information on their website www.worldgicancer.com/WCGI/index.asp

We are very delighted to announce you that Pancreatic Cancer Europe has a new sponsor!

Indeed, Mylan has joined us into our effort to raise awareness about pancreatic cancer.

Three years after its creation PCE has now three sponsors, thanks to the continuous effort of PCE Members in building the Platform ant its recognition. Thanks to the participation of this third sponsor PCE will certainly be able to run its action plan successfully and strive to improve proritization and knowledge of the disease for patients all over Europe. Thank you very much to Mylan.

Pancreatic cancer will this year become the third biggest cancer killer in the EU, yet awareness of the disease remains worryingly low. PCE Board Member, Matthias Löhr, on behalf of United European Gastroenterology (UEG-, has been interviewed by Portals for Horizon 2020 to highlight what needs to be done for Pancreatic Cancer.

You can find the full interview here

On 15 November, the members of Pancreatic Cancer Europe gathered in Brussels for their General Assembly meeting. At this occasion, members reviewed the 2016 action plan of PCE, and discussed and agreed on their priorities for 2017. The new action plan of PCE will be made available soon on the website.

To mark World Pancreatic Cancer Day 2016, Pancreatic Cancer Europe organised an awareness event in the European Parliament, hosted by Mr Pavel Poc MEP, under the auspices of the Slovak Presidency in the Council of the European Union.

Moderated by Jonathan Dimbleby, the event gathered key speakers:

  • RNDr. Pavel Poc, Member of the European Parliament, Vice-chair of the ENVI Committee of the European Parliament and Vice-chair of the MEPs Against Cancer (MAC) group
  • Ali Stunt, CEO and founder of Pancreatic Cancer Action, and founding board member of PCE
  • Prof Alfredo Carrato, Professor & Director, Medical Oncology Department, Ramon y Cajal University Hospital, Alcala University, Madrid, Spain
  • Prof Matthias Löhr, Karolinska Institutet / UEG
  • Prof. Stanislav Špánik, Secretary of State of the Slovak Health Ministry

All Pancreatic Cancer Europe members would like to thank Mr Pavel Poc MEP and the Slovak Presidency of the Council of the EU for this great event and their contribution to raising awareness of pancreatic cancer in Europe.

The detailed minutes of the event will be available soon.

At the occasion of World Pancreatic Cancer Day 2016, Pancreatic Cancer Europe is organising jointly with Mr Pavel Poc MEP an awareness event in the European Parliament, held under the auspices of the Slovak Presidency in the Council of the European Union. The event will be moderated by Jonathan Dimbleby and will feature prominent speakers from, among others, UEG (United European Gastroenterology), ECPC (European Cancer Patient Coalition) and Pancreatic Cancer Action. The event will take place on 15 November, from 12.30 to 14.00 CET. In the morning, Pancreatic Cancer Europe will hold its General Assembly meeting in Brussels.

For more information, please contact us.

Register here

At the occasion of the 49th meeting of the European Pancreatic Club (EPC), the founding members of Pancreatic Cancer Europe*, newly established as a non-profit association, gathered in Liverpool on 6 July.

This meeting marked a new milestone in the life of Pancreatic Cancer Europe, and its continued work to improve the prioritisation of pancreatic cancer in public policies and the situation of pancreatic cancer patients across Europe.

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The results of a large pan-European study by the European Study Group for Pancreatic Cancer (ESPAC) involving 732 patients has shown that the combination of gemcitabine plus capecitabine adjuvant therapy (following successful resection of the tumour) significantly improved survival.

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We have seen a lot in the press recently about the advances in immunotherapy for many cancers and, in the case of melanoma, with extraordinary results.

We’ve not as yet seen this happen for pancreatic cancer which, so far, has proven difficult to treat with either conventional chemotherapy and/or novel immunotherapy. Some trials of immunotherapy (which targets the body’s immune system to fight the cancer) have failed and, it is believed one of the reasons for this is that pancreatic cancer tumours are cunning in the way they are able to manipulate the immune system to help their own progression.

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Pancreatic cancer will become the 2nd leading cause of cancer-related death by the year 2030. There are different standards, therapies and settings in the European countries. Furthermore, there is no target-oriented treatment for patients with pancreatic cancer. “We treat all patients with Pancreatic cancer alike”, Professor Alfredo Carrato said, “but there are different groups and an urgent need to identify these groups by implementation of registries and biobanks”. Implementing efficient data collection and a European pancreatic cancer registry is the main objective of the Registries Work Stream of Pancreatic Cancer Europe, the European multi-stakeholder platform on pancreatic cancer.

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On the occasion of the 2nd World Pancreatic Cancer Day, the European Multi-Stakeholder Platform on Pancreatic Cancer held its third face-to-face meeting in the European Parliament, in Brussels, on November 10th. 

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