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People with a family member who had pancreatic cancer before age 50 face a greatly increased risk for the disease, a new study has found.

Researchers already knew that people with several relatives diagnosed with pancreatic cancer were more likely than others to develop the disease, but it wasn’t clear whether the relatives’ age when they got the disease played any role.

They found, though, that risk increased ninefold when just one of several family members with the disease developed it before turning 50.

The finding, published online Jan. 12 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, stemmed from a review of the medical records of more than 9,000 people in 1,718 families. (more…)

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Adjuvant chemoradiotherapy significantly improves survival of patients with resectable pancreatic cancer, according to medical records of almost 3,000 patients.

Chemoradiotherapy extended median survival by more than 30% compared with surgical resection only, researchers reported in the January Archives of Surgery.

In a multivariate analysis, adjuvant chemoradiotherapy proved to be one of only three predictors of improved survival, the other two being treatment at high-volume and academic centers.

“This analysis provides strong evidence in a real-world setting that postoperative chemoradiotherapy and possibly adjuvant radiotherapy alone improve clinical outcome in patients with pancreatic cancer,” Relin Yang, MD, of the University of Miami, and colleagues wrote. (more…)

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