Chronic pancreatitis (CP) is a progressive disease, often leading to loss of exocrine and endocrine function and debilitating abdominal pain. It is unknown why some individuals progress and develop complications, including pancreatogenic diabetes (PDM) and/or pancreas cancer (PDAC). In this consortium, investigators propose to conduct well-powered studies of risk factors, environmental influences, and proof-of-concept studies to move the field forward, particularly those factors that increase the risk of PDM and PDAC. We propose the following specific aims (SA) to meet the goals of RFA-DK-14-027. SA #1: To define the natural history of pediatric and adult patients with an established diagnosis of CP or acute recurrent pancreatitis, we propose a prospective observational cohort study. We will place emphasis on identifying risk factors and phenotypes for those patients who develop PDM and/or PDAC. Biological specimens will be obtained to facilitate the study of possible biomarkers which might facilitate early disease diagnosis and management. SA #2: The pathogenesis of PDM and the interactions of non-endocrine pancreatic disease with islet dysfunction are not well understood. We will use measurements of islet function (oral glucose tolerance tests, arginine- augmented hyperglycemic clamps) in cross-sectional and prospective studies to define the prevalence and physiologic basis for metabolic dysregulation and diabetes in CP. We will also prospectively ascertain changes in islet function and transition to overt PDM, and correlate changes in metabolic status with changes in pancreatic inflammation and function. SA #3: To evaluate the diagnostic efficacy of Magnetic Resonance (MR) imaging in the non-invasive evaluation of suspected early CP, we propose a prospective study comparing CP patients to a control population with normal pancreatic exocrine function. A reduced T1-weighted MR signal, reduced diffusion and decreased duodenal fluid volume in response to secretin stimulation may suggest CP. SA #4: Galectin-3 (Gal-3) is a carbohydrate-binding protein which appears to be involved in fibrogenesis and tissue remodeling in CP. A Gal-3 inhibitor appears to be safe and shows potential for reducing organ fibrosis in humans. To determine the safety and efficacy of a Gal-3 inhibitor, we propose a randomized placebo- controlled trial in 66 CP patients. Improvement in post-therapy duodenal fluid bicarbonate level will be the primary efficacy endpoint. We anticipate that this drug will reverse fibrosis, as manifested by improvement in duodenal bicarbonate level. Additional endpoints including MRI/MRCP appearance, Gal-3 level, quality of life, abdominal pain scores and ?-cell function will also be assessed.
Chronic pancreatitis (CP) is a progressive, unrelenting disease, often leading to loss of exocrine and endocrine function and debilitating abdominal pain, resulting in significant healthcare costs. It is unknown why some individuals progress to severe disease and develop serious complications, including diabetes and/or pancreas cancer. In this consortium, investigators from several institutions propose to conduct well-powered studies of risk factors, environmental influences, and proof-of-concept studies to move the field forward, particularly those factors that increase the risk of diabetes and malignancy.
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