Pancreatic Cancer Translational Center of Excellence

Research in progress

Early Detection and Immediate Care for Pancreatic Cancer

According to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, pancreatic cancer is projected to become the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States around 2020. Penn Medicine’s Pancreatic Cancer TCE, now known as the Pancreatic Cancer Research Center (PCRC), is answering this urgent need to establish new therapies for pancreatic cancer.

The PCRC has three areas of focus:

  • Clinical Trials: To have every pancreatic cancer patient enrolled in a clinical trial
  • Early Detection: To develop advanced early detection methods
  • Novel Therapies: To test new drugs in the lab and quickly deploying the findings to patients
  • Personalized Treatment: To provide personalized treatment plans for each of our patients

Multidisciplinary Approach to Pancreatic Cancer

Penn’s PCRC multidisciplinary team of medical oncologists, translational scientists, surgeons, gastroenterologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and support services work collaboratively to bring discoveries from the lab to the patient’s bedside.

Since our team works together each and every day, our patients receive personalized treatment plans, as well as access to the latest therapies and clinical trials.

Meet the Team

Robert H. Vonderheide, MD, DPhil, Director, PCRC

Dr. Vonderheide is a Professor of Medicine, the Hanna Wise Professor in Cancer Research at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and an investigator of the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute. He combines efforts in both basic research and clinical investigation to advance the understanding of tumor immunology and to develop novel immunotherapies for cancer, with a focus on pancreatic cancer. He has grant funding from the National Cancer Institute, The Lustgarten Foundation, Stand Up To Cancer and the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

Ben Z. Stanger, MD, PhD, Scientific Director, PCRC

Dr. Stanger is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Cell and Developmental Biology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and an Associate Investigator of the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute. He is an elected member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation and a former Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences.

Ursina Teitelbaum, MD, Clinical Director, PCRC

Dr. Teitelbaum is an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at Penn Medicine and serves as Clinical Director of Penn’s PCRC. She is also a dedicated GI medical oncologist with special interest in treating pancreas adenocarcinoma, and she serves as Leader of the Pancreas Cancer Service Line at the Abramson Cancer Center. She was recently elected to the Penn Medicine Academy of Master Clinicians, which honors Penn Medicine clinicians that exemplify the highest standards of clinical excellence, humanism and professionalism.

Schedule an Appointment

If you have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, please contact: Patricia Gambino, MSN, RN, Pancreatic Cancer Nurse Navigator via email or phone 215-615-0537.

Learn more about Penn’s Oncology Navigators and support services.

Penn’s Pancreatic Cancer Clinical Trials

The PCRC has a current list of pancreatic clinical trials at Abramson Cancer Center. To view them, visit the PCRC School of Medicine website, or contact your Penn oncologist or Patricia Gambino.

Ways to Give

Every dollar helps fund our clinical and translational efforts, and accelerates innovation. Give here.

For more information about giving opportunities, please contact Evelyn Schwartz, Director of Leadership Gifts & Philanthropic Partnerships, via email or call 215-898-8625 (work) 609-206-2133 (cell).

Support Groups & Community Involvement

Pancreatic Cancer Networking Group 

The Pancreatic Networking Group provides positive support to patients, family and friends. We look to encourage one another, share information and resources.

When: The fourth Wednesday of the month, from 3:00 to 5:00 pm 
Where: Patient and Family Services Conference Room, 1st Floor South Pavilion,Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine
Contact: Megan Melick, LSW at 215-360-0570

Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PanCan) Purplestride Philadelphia 2017

This year, the PanCan 5K run and family-friendly walk will take place on 11/04/2017 at Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park. To join the Pancreatic Cancer Research Center team, sign up here or email Patricia Gambino or call 215-615-0537.