Targeting stromal microenvironment in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma: controversies and promises
Pancreatic cancer is a highly lethal disease. Conventional therapeutics targeting pancreas cancer cell compartment using cytotoxics improved patient survival but at the expense of significant toxicity. Microscopically, the tumor is characterized by thick desmoplastic stroma that surrounds islands of pancreatic cancer cells. The tumor microenvironment has been found to play important roles in carcinogenesis, the development of drug resistance, and mediating immunosuppression. The understanding the tumor-stromal interaction has led to the development of novel therapeutic approaches. Here, we review the strategies that are currently in (or, near to) clinical evaluation and the underlying preclinical rationales.