Pancreatic Cancer

Our patients with pancreatic cancer are cared for in a multidisciplinary clinic to coordinate, simplify and combine multiple appointments. Our collaborative team coordinates patient care creating personalized therapy plans.

Experts at Fred Hutch Cancer Center and UW Medicine have identified new ways to prevent, detect early, diagnose and treat pancreatic cancer. Researchers discovered genetic mutations that define targets for screening, early diagnosis and new treatment strategies that include enzyme/chemotherapy combinations and immunotherapy.


We have integrated a multi-dimensional program across UW Medicine and Fred Hutch Cancer Center for translation with its own administrative structure – the Center for Accelerated Translation in Pancreas Cancer (CATPAC). The components of CATPAC include population sciences, high-risk disease, preclinical and clinical trials.

A focal point of CATPAC is the Pancreas Cancer Specialty Clinic (PCSC), a real-time multi-disciplinary clinic in which patients receive a same-day comprehensive evaluation and care plan from a team of specialists including surgical oncology, medical oncology, radiation oncology, gastroenterology, body imaging (radiology), pathology, nursing, symptom management and palliative care, pharmacy, nutrition, social work, and staff focused on spiritual needs.  

We have developed genetically accurate models of cancer that mimic the human disease. These models have been used to develop and test novel therapeutic strategies with pancreas cancer. Some of these drugs are in clinical trials available here.

Dr. Sita Kugel
STTR Pancreas Cancer Co-Deputy Director

Dr. Sita Kugel studies pancreatic cancer, one of the most aggressive and deadly types of cancer. She works to understand the molecular changes that underpin different subtypes of pancreatic cancer and how these could be exploited to develop new targeted therapies. Dr. Kugel focuses on changes to DNA that affect how genes are turned on and off without altering the DNA sequence itself. She has developed several preclinical models of pancreatic cancer to test the consequences of these changes and potential therapies.

Learn more at the Kugel Lab

Dr. E. Gabriela Chiorean
STTR Pancreas Cancer Co-Deputy Director

Dr. Gabriela Chiorean strives to improve care for patients with gastrointestinal and pancreatic cancers. She leads early-stage clinical trials of new therapies for these cancers, including new chemotherapies, immunotherapies and targeted drugs. She also aims to identify biomarkers of cancer, such as molecules in the blood, that could be developed into a minimally invasive test for the early detection of cancers or precancers.