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4 new drugs will change prostate cancer care
Date:2/16/2012

the first "immunotherapy" drug used for the treatment of cancer. The drug acts like a vaccine, priming the immune system to recognize and thus fight against prostate cancer cells. In a phase II clinical trial of 125 patients, the drug extended the median survival time from 16.6 to 25.1 months.

Finally, the drug Abiraterone Acetate completely suppresses the body's ability to make testosterone, which many prostate cancers need to grow (as opposed to previous drugs, which hoped to out-compete testosterone with estrogen, or imperfectly controlled testosterone production).

Crawford notes that these drugs are being approved for use only after more established therapies have failed and hopes that in coming years science may accelerate the use of these drugs to first-line therapies.

E. David Crawford, MD, investigator at the University of Colorado Cancer Center

"Before we just had hormone therapy, then we got chemo, and each therapy we added packed on another couple months of survival. Now with these news drugs we're tacking on even more time. The light at the end of the tunnel is the hope that we'll turn this into a chronic disease and now we might have the tools that in some combination will do it," Crawford says.


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Contact: Garth Sundem
garth.sundem@ucdenver.edu
University of Colorado Denver
Source:Eurekalert

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