Pancreatic Cancer

The pancreas is an elongated organ locating in close proximity to the duodenum. It consists of three parts—head, body, and tail—and is partitioned into lobules by connective tissue. Approximately 85% of the pancreas is composed of exocrine cells called acini that secret digestive enzymes such as proteases, lipase and amylase, ribonuclease, gelatinase, deoxyribonuclease, and elastase. These digestive enzymes, together with bicarbonate secreted from the epithelial cells lining small pancreatic ducts, enter into pancreatic ducts and subsequently to the lumen of the duodenum. Embedded in the exocrine tissue are endocrine tissues called Islets of Langerhans that secret endocrine enzymes, such as insulin and glucagon.

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