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Newly funded project seeks marker for pancreatic cancer


Ottawa, ON – The Cancer Research Society, in partnership with Pancreatic Cancer Canada (PCC), is awarding $120,000 to Dr. Michael Sawyer and his team of researchers from the University of Alberta’s Cross Cancer Institute to pursue research on a promising method for detecting pancreatic cancer.

Dr. Sawyer’s new study is an important phase of a research project that took shape with significant headway a few months ago.

“In 2012, we discovered a distinct chemical marker in the urine of pancreatic cancer patients,” he said. “Based on this discovery, this new study will help confirm whether this marker can detect pancreatic cancer within a wider group of people, through a simple urine test. This is significant progress because right now, there are no reliable means, let alone a non-invasive test, to identify this deadly cancer in its early stages.”

Despite significant advances in the treatment of other cancers, pancreatic cancer remains, for the most part, incurable. The funding partners aim to build a comprehensive research community poised to make significant breakthroughs – PCC is committed to advancing pancreatic cancer research while the Cancer Research Society’s funding program is designed to attract scientists with innovative ideas for all cancers.

“We hope that this research will translate to novel strategies for early detection of pancreatic cancer in patients in the near future,” stated Betty Aldridge, co-founder and Chair of Pancreatic Cancer Canada.