Published: Wed, June 06, 2018
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

Prostate cancer drug extends the lifespan of cancer patients

Prostate cancer drug extends the lifespan of cancer patients

We have several patients who have had a complete response.

Prostate expert Dr David Graham at Levine Cancer Institute, North Carolina, said: 'These men have the most aggressive type of disease and have been through the gamut of what we have available now.

As such, they intend to explore this finding in a further trial to determine whether there is a particular subset of prostate cancer patients that might benefit most from immunotherapy.

The earlier trails conducted using immunotherapy in prostate cancer did not prove to be successful.

Nell Barrie from Cancer research United Kingdom states that the next course of action is to "find out how to tell which men will benefit from taking the drug".

Now, a new study led by The Institute of Cancer Research and the Royal Marsden Hospital in London has found "amazing" results in those with prostate cancer.

Immunotherapy drugs work by stimulating the immune system to recognise and fight the cancer, and are used to treat some advanced cancers, including lung and melanoma.

Yes! Now the prostate cancer patients with hardly weeks or months to live will be able to survive longer if they are subjected to proper immunotherapy treatment.


Nonetheless, for sufferers reminiscent of these within the new examine with docetaxel-refractory metastatic castration-resistant prostate most cancers, there may be at present no efficient therapy. It is an IgG4 isotype antibody that blocks a protective mechanism of cancer cells, and allows the immune system to destroy those cancer cells.

Professor de Bono said: "We are planning a new clinical trial, specifically in men with prostate cancer whose tumours have mutations in DNA fix genes, to see if immunotherapy can become a standard part of their treatment".

Only around 20% of cancer patients respond to immunotherapy and researchers do not fully understand why. More white patients than black patients had no PSA decline.

Prof de Bono said the drug was "well tolerated" by patients "with relatively few severe side effects".

"The challenges we now face are how to predict in advance who will benefit, and how to make immunotherapy work for more people".

The researchers also said that some of the patients who had substantial responses to the treatment have tumors that may have mutations in the genes that control DNA fix, an important cellular process that maintains the genome.

"Our study provides prospective evidence that there might be inherited genes that could affect treatment response and track with African ancestry in prostate cancer patients", George said.

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