2019 Research Investments

Our past research investments into genomic sequencing (COMPASS and PanGen), helped us better understand the intensely personal nature of this disease, right down to the molecular level. From the COMPASS trial came the discovery of an important potential biomarker called GATA6, which became a key measurement in the clinical trial investments we made in 2019. These trials are expanding our knowledge while working to help patients in real time by delivering novel therapies and strategies that take a more personalized approach to treatment. We also continued our commitment to genomic sequencing in Quebec with a further investment in the COMPASS trial.


Dr. Jennifer Knox, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (ON)

NeoPancONE aims to usher in a new standard of care for resectable pancreatic cancer in Canada, while measuring an important potential biomarker (GATA6) to understand which patients will respond best to this treatment in the future. Patients receive six courses of chemotherapy (modified FOLFIRINOX) before and after surgery, first to shrink the pancreatic cancer tumour and then after to eliminate any remaining cancer cells, with the goal of giving patients a greater chance at disease-free survival. This is the first in a multi-year investment in this game-changing research.


Dr. Jennifer Knox, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (ON)

Using cutting edge organoid models created with a patients own tumour cells, PASS-01 researchers are able to test multiple therapies on a patient’s tumour avatars to discern which treatment would be most effective. A collaboration between the foremost cancer centres in North America, PASS-01 brings together some of the brightest minds in pancreatic cancer research to learn more about this disease, advance our understanding of GATA6 expression, and help patients with advanced disease in real time, giving them a greater chance at longer life. This is the first in a multi-year investment in this critical research. 

PASS-01 is a Stand Up To Cancer Pancreatic Cancer Convergence Dream Team, which is funded by the Pancreatic Cancer Collective, an initiative of the Lustgarten Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer® (SU2C), SU2C Canada and Pancreatic Cancer Canada.


COMPASS Expansion: Montreal

Dr. George Zogopolous, McGill University Health Centre (QC)

COMPASS involves comprehensive, real time genomic analysis of advanced PDAC (metastatic and locally advanced) tumours, using the whole genome and RNA sequencing for a clinically meaningful turn around time. This means any genetic discoveries that may be found have the potential to impact treatment decisions for participating patients, increasing their eligibility for clinical trials and finding the best treatment for their subtype.