Dr Adam Frampton
Simple Summary This review summarizes the current literature related to the microbiome and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). The aim of this review is to explore the current role of the microbiome in the disease process, screening/diagnostics and to postulate the future role with regards to therapeutic strategies including chemotherapy, immunotherapy and surgery. We further explore the future of microbiome modulation (faecal microbiome transplants, bacterial consortiums, anti-microbials and probiotics), their applications and how we can improve the future of microbiome modulation in a bid to improve PDAC outcomes. Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is expected to become the second most common cause of cancer death in the USA by 2030, yet progress continues to lag behind that of other cancers, with only 9% of patients surviving beyond 5 years. Long-term survivorship of PDAC and improving survival has, until recently, escaped our understanding. One recent frontier in the cancer field is the microbiome. The microbiome collectively refers to the extensive community of bacteria and fungi that colonise us. It is estimated that there is one to ten prokaryotic cells for each human somatic cell, yet, the significance of this community in health and disease has, until recently, been overlooked. This review examines the role of the microbiome in PDAC and how it may alter survival outcomes. We evaluate the possibility of employing microbiomic signatures as biomarkers of PDAC. Ultimately this review analyses whether the microbiome may be amenable to targeting and consequently altering the natural history of PDAC.