Dissecting FGF Signalling to Target Cellular Crosstalk in Pancreatic Cancer

Edward P Carter, Abigail S Coetzee, Elena Tomas Bort, Qiaoying Wang, Hemant M Kocher, Richard P Grose

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Citations (SciVal)


Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) has a poor prognosis with a 5 year survival rate of less than 8%, and is predicted to become the second leading cause of cancer-related death by 2030. Alongside late detection, which impacts upon surgical treatment, PDAC tumours are challenging to treat due to their desmoplastic stroma and hypovascular nature, which limits the effectiveness of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs), which form a key part of this stroma, become activated in response to tumour development, entering into cross-talk with cancer cells to induce tumour cell proliferation and invasion, leading to metastatic spread. We and others have shown that Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor (FGFR) signalling can play a critical role in the interactions between PDAC cells and the tumour microenvironment, but it is clear that the FGFR signalling pathway is not acting in isolation. Here we describe our current understanding of the mechanisms by which FGFR signalling contributes to PDAC progression, focusing on its interaction with other pathways in signalling networks and discussing the therapeutic approaches that are being developed to try and improve prognosis for this terrible disease.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 8 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

This research received no external funding.

Data Availability Statement


  • Fibroblast Growth Factors/metabolism
  • Humans
  • Neoplastic Stem Cells/metabolism
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms/metabolism
  • Pancreatic Stellate Cells/metabolism
  • Receptors, Fibroblast Growth Factor/metabolism
  • Signal Transduction


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