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Approved Research

Chronic Ingestion of high dose proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) and development of pancreatic cancer

Principal Investigator: Dr Jill Smith
Approved Research ID: 63113
Approval date: June 16th 2021

Lay summary

The incidence of pancreatic cancer has more than doubled in the last 2 decades and in spite of our improved technology and therapeutics, the 5-year survival is still at a stagnant 7%. A protein called gastrin has been shown to stimulate growth of pancreatic cancer. The normal role of gastrin is to control acid production in the stomach.  When people take certain medicines that decrease stomach acid for 'acid reflux disease', gastrin levels can increase. The medicines that are associated with increasing blood gastrin levels are called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), such as Omeprazole. The reasons for the increased frequency of pancreatic cancer over the past 2 decades are unknown.  We are hypothesizing that the increase may be related to the over use of these medications (PPIs) that increase gastrin. In this analysis we will examine the incidence of pancreatic cancer among those taking these medications and those not taking PPIs.