Islet cell cancer is a term used to describe a group of cancers that can occur in the hormone-producing cells of the pancreas. Islet cell cancers, also known as pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, are very rare.

Islet cells are small hormone-producing cells normally found in your pancreas. Islet cell cancer arises from these cells. Some islet cell cancer cells continue to secrete hormones, creating too much of the given hormone in your body. Examples of these types of islet cell cancers include gastrinoma and glucagonoma.

Clinical trials

Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this disease.

Islet cell cancer care at Mayo Clinic

Aug. 23, 2017
  1. AskMayoExpert. Neuroendocrine cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
  2. Neuroendocrine tumors. Fort Washington, Pa.: National Comprehensive Cancer Network. http://www.nccn.org/professionals/physician_gls/f_guidelines.asp. Accessed Sept. 12, 2016.
  3. Pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (islet cell tumors) treatment (PDQ). National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/types/pancreatic/patient/pnet-treatment-pdq. Accessed Sept. 12, 2016.


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