Pancreatic cancer is a particularly vicious disease. Because the pancreas is nestled deep within the internal organ cavity, identifying the tumor early is a rare occurrence. In fact, over half of the diagnoses occur after the disease has spread to distant parts of the body. As a result, there is only a 9% five-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer. Researchers have remained stumped on finding accurate screening and effective treatment methods as pancreatic cancer continues to rise towards the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. All hope is not lost, however. Determined researchers have adamantly been working on identifying the biology of the disease to create effective treatment options for pancreatic cancer patients. While there is still a long road ahead for pancreatic cancer research, recent breakthroughs offer a shimmer of hope in identifying and combating the disease.