The treatment options for most pancreatic cancer patients remains limited to chemotherapy, with patients developing resistance soon after. In order to stimulate investigations into treatment options for pancreatic cancer, the patient platform 'Living with Hope' yearly awards personal grants to young investigators, named 'Lisa Waller Hayes beurzen'.

This year, Pei Pei Che, PhD student from the department of Radiation Oncology, received the grant for a work visit to the research centers working on pancreatic cancer in Pisa, Italy. Together with their expertise and previous collaborations with the departments of Medical Oncology and Surgery, she will focus on new models and integration of nanotechnologies and omics studies to improve the combination of ionizing radiation with chemotherapeutics.

With this grant, Pei Pei can continue her PhD trajectory into improving the treatment of pancreatic cancer through combination with radiotherapy: “Radiotherapy remains a pillar as a treatment modality in various tumor types and is often combined with chemotherapy through use of radiosensitizers – agents that can enhance the effect of ionizing radiation. Clinical trials reported conflicting results on the role of radiation therapy in pancreatic cancer. However, thanks to new technologies and translational research there is still much to learn, with the prospect to expand the therapeutic options for patients affected by this malignancy.”

For more information, contact Pei Pei Che, or read the article (in Dutch, pitch with English subtitles): 'Drie LWH-beurzen voor jonge onderzoekers | Living With Hope'.

Funding for the PhD project was provided by the Zabawas Stichting.

Researchers involved at Cancer Center Amsterdam:

Pei Pei Che

Dr. Peter Sminia

Dr. Elisa Giovannetti

Dr. Max Dahele

Prof. Ben Slotman