The symposium featured four leading pancreatic cancer experts: Margaret Tempero MD (University of California San Francisco), Michel Ducreux MD PhD (Institut Gustave Roussy), Manuel Hidalgo MD PhD (Universidad CEU San Pablo, Madrid) and Werner Scheithauser MD, (Medical University of Vienna)
While none of the distinguished thought leaders said it directly, their palpable excitement and enthusiasm about nab-paclitaxel (Abraxane) and frequent mentions of changes in the standard of care suggests that the phase 3 trial results, expected in the very near future, will be positive. The fair balanced review of the preclinical and clinical data for nab-paclitaxel showed clear efficacy, and no data was presented that suggested otherwise. However, we will not know for sure how effective abraxane is in pancreatic cancer until the phase 3 trial results are reported, which Celgene have said will be in Q4, 2012 or Q1, 2013.
Abraxane will change the standard of care if approved for pancreatic cancer. If the data shows a doubling of survival time (or even longer) for patients with advanced disease, it will be a major breakthrough, and of sufficient magnitude to be considered for a plenary presentation at the ASCO annual meeting next year. It was exciting to be at this symposia and see a glimpse of the possible future.