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Becker’s Hospital Review: Podcast | Dr. Arsen Osipov Discusses Pancreatic Cancer

Becker’s Hospital Review recently featured Arsen Osipov, MD, program lead in the Pancreatic Cancer Multidisciplinary Clinic and Precision Medicine Program at Cedars-Sinai Cancer, on the “Becker’s Healthcare Podcast” discussing progress in treating pancreatic cancer, a disease with a poor prognosis.

Osipov spoke with Scott Becker, founder and publisher of Becker’s Healthcare and Becker’s Hospital Review, about early detection of pancreatic cancer, quickly starting a treatment plan and immunotherapy and precision medicine advances that could affect the disease.

“Among all cancers, pancreas cancer is not the most common one, but the grim statistic is that by the year 2030, pancreatic cancer will become the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in this country,” Osipov told Becker.

While pancreatic cancer survival has improved over the past decade, it is still dismally low at just 11% because most patients are diagnosed late stage, when surgery is not an option, and traditional chemotherapies are often ineffective.

But there is reason to be optimistic about new therapies on the horizon, Osipov told Becker. These treatments include immunotherapy for pancreatic cancer currently being studied in clinical trials at Cedars-Sinai.

“Over the last 10 to 20 years, immune therapy, in particular, has changed the treatment paradigm for cancer in general,” said Osipov, who also is a medical oncologist and researcher in the Gastrointestinal Research Group at Cedars-Sinai Cancer. “We’re trying to emulate what we do with other cancers in pancreatic cancer by finding novel targets, novel drugs and making immunotherapy work in this cancer.”

Osipov said precision medicine is another area of significant opportunity, in which the results of biomarker and genetic testing are used to help pinpoint therapies that could be effective for each individual patient instead of a one-size-fits-all approach.  

To further improve outcomes, Osipov told Becker that early detection and starting a treatment plan quickly after diagnosis are critical. He said the Pancreatic Cancer Multidisciplinary Clinic at Cedars-Sinai expedites care by meeting with patients to discuss a treatment plan the same day they receive a diagnosis.

“What normally would take…four to six weeks, we actually finish it off in four to six hours,” Osipov told Becker.  

Click here to listen to the complete podcast from Becker’s Hospital Review.