Dynamics of Serum CA19-9 in Patients Undergoing Pancreatic Cancer Resection
BACKGROUND:Carbohydrate antigen (CA) 19-9 is an established perioperative prognostic biomarker for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). However, it is unclear how CA19-9 monitoring should be used during postoperative surveillance to detect recurrence and to guide the initiation of recurrence-focused therapy. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to elucidate the value of CA19-9 as a diagnostic biomarker for disease recurrence in patients who underwent PDAC resection. METHODS:Serum CA19-9 levels at diagnosis, after surgery, and during postoperative follow-up were analyzed in patients who underwent PDAC resection. All patients with at least two postoperative follow-up CA19-9 measurements prior to recurrence were included. Patients deemed to be non-secretors of CA19-9 were excluded. The relative increase in postoperative CA19-9 was calculated for each patient by dividing the maximum postoperative CA19-9 value by the first postoperative value. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was performed to identify the optimal threshold for the relative increase in CA19-9 levels to identify recurrence in the training set using Youden's index. The performance of this cutoff was validated in a test set by calculating the area under the curve (AUC) and was compared to the performance of the optimal cutoff for postoperative CA19-9 measurements as a continuous value. In addition, sensitivity, specificity, and predictive values were assessed. RESULTS:In total, 271 patients were included, of whom 208 (77%) developed recurrence. ROC analysis demonstrated that a relative increase in postoperative serum CA19-9 of 2.6x was predictive of recurrence, with 58% sensitivity, 83% specificity, 95% positive predictive value, and 28% negative predictive value. The AUC for a 2.6x relative increase in CA19-9 level was 0.719 in the training set and 0.663 in the test set. The AUC of postoperative CA19-9 as a continuous value (optimal threshold, 52) was 0.671 in the training set. In the training set, the detection of a 2.6-fold increase in CA19-9 preceded the detection of recurrence by a mean difference of 7 months (P<0.001) and in the test set by 10 months (P<0.001). CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:A relative increase in postoperative serum CA19-9 level of 2.6-fold is a stronger predictive marker for recurrence than a continuous CA19-9 cutoff. A relative CA19-9 increase can precede the detection of recurrence on imaging for up to 7-10 months. Therefore, CA19-9 dynamics can be used as a biomarker to guide the initiation of recurrence-focused treatment.
Preoperative chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgical decision-making in patients with borderline resectable and locally advanced pancreatic cancer
Surgical resection combined with systemic chemotherapy is the cornerstone of treatment for patients with localized pancreatic cancer. Upfront surgery is considered suboptimal in cases with extensive vascular involvement, which can be classified as either borderline resectable pancreatic cancer or locally advanced pancreatic cancer. In these patients, FOLFIRINOX or gemcitabine plus nab-paclitaxel chemotherapy is currently used as preoperative chemotherapy and is eventually combined with radiotherapy. Thus, more patients might reach 5-year overall survival. Patient selection for chemotherapy, radiotherapy and subsequent surgery is based on anatomical, biological and conditional parameters. Current guidelines and clinical practices vary considerably regarding preoperative chemotherapy and radiotherapy, response evaluation, and indications for surgery. In this Review, we provide an overview of the clinical evidence regarding disease staging, preoperative therapy, response evaluation and surgery in patients with borderline resectable pancreatic cancer or locally advanced pancreatic cancer. In addition, a clinical work-up is proposed based on the available evidence and guidelines. We identify knowledge gaps and outline a proposed research agenda.
The Role of Intraoperative Pancreatoscopy in the Surgical Management of Intraductal Papillary Mucinous Neoplasms: A Scoping Review
OBJECTIVES/OBJECTIVE:Most patients with intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs) are diagnosed with a solitary lesion; however, the presence of skip lesions, not appreciable on imaging, has been described. Postoperatively, these missed lesions can continue to grow and potentially become cancerous. Intraoperative pancreatoscopy (IOP) may facilitate detection of such skip lesions in the remnant gland. The aim of this scoping review was to appraise the evidence on the role of IOP in the surgical management of IPMNs. MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:Studies reporting on the use of IOP during IPMN surgery were identified through searches of the PubMed, Embase, and Scopus databases. Data extracted included IOP findings, surgical plan modifications, and patient outcomes. The primary outcome of interest was the utility of IOP in surgical decision making. RESULTS:Ten studies reporting on the use of IOP for IPMNs were identified, representing 147 patients. A total of 46 skip lesions were identified by IOP. Overall, surgical plans were altered in 37% of patients who underwent IOP. No IOP-related complications were reported. CONCLUSIONS:The current literature suggests a potential role of integration of IOP into the management of patients with IPMNs. This tool is safe and feasible and can result in changes in surgical decision making.
Machine learning to detect the SINEs of cancer
We previously described an approach called RealSeqS to evaluate aneuploidy in plasma cell-free DNA through the amplification of ~350,000 repeated elements with a single primer. We hypothesized that an unbiased evaluation of the large amount of sequencing data obtained with RealSeqS might reveal other differences between plasma samples from patients with and without cancer. This hypothesis was tested through the development of a machine learning approach called Alu Profile Learning Using Sequencing (A-PLUS) and its application to 7615 samples from 5178 individuals, 2073 with solid cancer and the remainder without cancer. Samples from patients with cancer and controls were prespecified into four cohorts used for model training, analyte integration, and threshold determination, validation, and reproducibility. A-PLUS alone provided a sensitivity of 40.5% across 11 different cancer types in the validation cohort, at a specificity of 98.5%. Combining A-PLUS with aneuploidy and eight common protein biomarkers detected 51% of the cancers at 98.9% specificity. We found that part of the power of A-PLUS could be ascribed to a single feature-the global reduction of AluS subfamily elements in the circulating DNA of patients with solid cancer. We confirmed this reduction through the analysis of another independent dataset obtained with a different approach (whole-genome sequencing). The evaluation of Alu elements may therefore have the potential to enhance the performance of several methods designed for the earlier detection of cancer.
Anatomical and Biological Considerations to Determine Resectability in Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) remains associated with poor outcomes with a 5-year survival of 12% across all stages of the disease. These poor outcomes are driven by a delay in diagnosis and an early propensity for systemic dissemination of the disease. Recently, aggressive surgical approaches involving complex vascular resections and reconstructions have become more common, thus allowing more locally advanced tumors to be resected. Unfortunately, however, even after the completion of surgery and systemic therapy, approximately 40% of patients experience early recurrence of disease. To determine resectability, many institutions utilize anatomical staging systems based on the presence and extent of vascular involvement of major abdominal vessels around the pancreas. However, these classification systems are based on anatomical considerations only and do not factor in the burden of systemic disease. By integrating the biological criteria, we possibly could avoid futile resections often associated with significant morbidity. Especially patients with anatomically resectable disease who have a heavy burden of radiologically undetected systemic disease most likely do not derive a survival benefit from resection. On the contrary, we could offer complex resections to those who have locally advanced or oligometastatic disease but have favorable systemic biology and are most likely to benefit from resection. This review summarizes the current literature on defining anatomical and biological resectability in patients with pancreatic cancer.
Outcomes after distal pancreatectomy with or without splenectomy for intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm: international multicentre cohort study
BACKGROUND:International guidelines on intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) recommend a formal oncological resection including splenectomy when distal pancreatectomy is indicated. This study aimed to compare oncological and surgical outcomes after distal pancreatectomy with or without splenectomy in patients with presumed IPMN. METHODS:An international, retrospective cohort study was undertaken in 14 high-volume centres from 7 countries including consecutive patients after distal pancreatectomy for IPMN (2005-2019). Patients were divided into spleen-preserving distal pancreatectomy (SPDP) and distal pancreatectomy with splenectomy (DPS). The primary outcome was lymph node metastasis (LNM). Secondary outcomes were overall survival, duration of operation, blood loss, and secondary splenectomy. RESULTS:Overall, 700 patients were included after distal pancreatectomy for IPMN; 123 underwent SPDP (17.6%) and 577 DPS (82.4%). The rate of malignancy was 29.6% (137 patients) and the overall rate of LNM 6.7% (47 patients). Patients with preoperative suspicion of malignancy had a LNM rate of 17.2% (23 of 134) versus 4.3% (23 of 539) among patients without suspected malignancy (P < 0.001). Overall, SPDP was associated with a shorter operating time (median 180 versus 226 min; P = 0.001), less blood loss (100 versus 336 ml; P = 0.001), and shorter hospital stay (5 versus 8 days; P < 0.001). No significant difference in overall survival was observed between SPDP and DPS for IPMN after correction for prognostic factors (HR 0.50, 95% c.i. 0.22 to 1.18; P = 0.504). CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:This international cohort study found LNM in 6.7% of patients undergoing distal pancreatectomy for IPMN. In patients without preoperative suspicion of malignancy, SPDP seemed oncologically safe and was associated with improved short-term outcomes compared with DPS.
Accurate non-invasive grading of nonfunctional pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors with a CT derived radiomics signature
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:The purpose of this study was to develop a radiomics-signature using computed tomography (CT) data for the preoperative prediction of grade of nonfunctional pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (NF-PNETs). MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:A retrospective study was performed on patients undergoing resection for NF-PNETs between 2010 and 2019. A total of 2436 radiomic features were extracted from arterial and venous phases of pancreas-protocol CT examinations. Radiomic features that were associated with final pathologic grade observed in the surgical specimens were subjected to joint mutual information maximization for hierarchical feature selection and the development of the radiomic-signature. Youden-index was used to identify optimal cutoff for determining tumor grade. A random forest prediction model was trained and validated internally. The performance of this tool in predicting tumor grade was compared to that of EUS-FNA sampling that was used as the standard of reference. RESULTS:A total of 270 patients were included and a fusion radiomic-signature based on 10 selected features was developed using the development cohort (n = 201). There were 149 men and 121 women with a mean age of 59.4 ± 12.3 (standard deviation) years (range: 23.3-85.0 years). Upon internal validation in a new set of 69 patients, a strong discrimination was observed with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.80 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.71-0.90) with corresponding sensitivity and specificity of 87.5% (95% CI: 79.7-95.3) and 73.3% (95% CI: 62.9-83.8) respectively. Of the study population, 143 patients (52.9%) underwent EUS-FNA. Biopsies were non-diagnostic in 26 patients (18.2%) and could not be graded due to insufficient sample in 42 patients (29.4%). In the cohort of 75 patients (52.4%) in whom biopsies were graded the radiomic-signature demonstrated not different AUC as compared to EUS-FNA (AUC: 0.69 vs. 0.67; P = 0.723), however greater sensitivity (i.e., ability to accurately identify G2/3 lesion was observed (80.8% vs. 42.3%; P < 0.001). CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:Non-invasive assessment of tumor grade in patients with PNETs using the proposed radiomic-signature demonstrated high accuracy. Prospective validation and optimization could overcome the commonly experienced diagnostic uncertainty in the assessment of tumor grade in patients with PNETs and could facilitate clinical decision-making.
International evidence-based Kyoto guidelines for the management of intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm of the pancreas
This study group aimed to revise the 2017 international consensus guidelines for the management of intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) of the pancreas, and mainly focused on five topics; the revision of high-risk stigmata (HRS) and worrisome features (WF), surveillance of non-resected IPMN, surveillance after resection of IPMN, revision of pathological aspects, and investigation of molecular markers in cyst fluid. A new development from the prior guidelines is that systematic reviews were performed for each one of these topics, and published separately to provide evidence-based recommendations. One of the highlights of these new "evidence-based guidelines" is to propose a new management algorithm, and one major revision is to include into the assessment of HRS and WF the imaging findings from endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) and the results of cytological analysis from EUS-guided fine needle aspiration technique, when this is performed. Another key element of the current guidelines is to clarify whether lifetime surveillance for small IPMNs is required, and recommends two options, "stop surveillance" or "continue surveillance for possible development of concomitant pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma", for small unchanged BD-IPMN after 5 years surveillance. Several other points are also discussed, including identifying high-risk features for recurrence in patients who underwent resection of non-invasive IPMN with negative surgical margin, summaries of the recent observations in the pathology of IPMN. In addition, the emerging role of cyst fluid markers that can aid in distinguishing IPMN from other pancreatic cysts and identify those IPMNs that harbor high-grade dysplasia or invasive carcinoma is discussed.
Concepts and techniques for revascularization of replaced hepatic arteries in pancreatic head resections
BACKGROUND:The relationship of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) to important peripancreatic vasculature dictates resectability. As per the current guidelines, tumors with extensive, unreconstructible venous or arterial involvement are staged as unresectable locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC). The introduction of effective multiagent chemotherapy and development of surgical techniques, have renewed interest in local control of PDAC. High-volume centers have demonstrated safe resection of short-segment encasement of the common hepatic artery. Knowledge of the unique anatomy of the patient's vasculature is important in surgical planning of these complex resections. Hepatic artery anomalies are common and insufficient knowledge can result in iatrogenic vascular injury during surgery. METHODS AND RESULTS/RESULTS:Here, we discuss different strategies to resect and reconstruct replaced hepatic arteries during pancreatectomy for PDAC to ensure restoration of adequate blood flow to the liver. Strategies include various arterial transpositions, in-situ interposition grafts and the use of extra-anatomic jump grafts. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:These surgical techniques allow more patients to undergo the only available curative treatment currently available for PDAC. Moreover, these improvements in surgical techniques highlight the shortcoming of current resectability criteria, which rely mainly on local tumor involvement and technical resectability, and disregards tumor biology.
"Conversion surgery" for locally advanced pancreatic cancer: A position paper by the study group at the joint meeting of the International Association of Pancreatology (IAP) & Japan Pancreas Society (JPS) 2022
Locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC), which progresses locally and surrounds major vessels, has historically been deemed unresectable. Surgery alone failed to provide curative resection and improve overall survival. With the advancements in treatment, reports have shown favorable results in LAPC after undergoing successful chemotherapy therapy or chemoradiation therapy followed by surgical resection, so-called "conversion surgery", at experienced high-volume centers. However, recognizing significant regional and institutional disparities in the management of LAPC, an international consensus meeting on conversion surgery for LAPC was held during the Joint Congress of the 26th Meeting of the International Association of Pancreatology (IAP) and the 53rd Annual Meeting of Japan Pancreas Society (JPS) in Kyoto in July 2022. During the meeting, presenters reported the current best multidisciplinary practices for LAPC, including preoperative modalities, best systemic treatment regimens and durations, procedures of conversion surgery with or without vascular resections, biomarkers, and genetic studies. It was unanimously agreed among the experts in this meeting that "cancer biology is surpassing locoregional anatomical resectability" in the era of effective multiagent treatment. The biology of pancreatic cancer has yet to be further elucidated, and we believe it is essential to improve the treatment outcomes of LAPC patients through continued efforts from each institution and more international collaboration. This article summarizes the agreement during the discussion amongst the experts in the meeting. We hope that this will serve as a foundation for future international collaboration and recommendations for future guidelines.