Men with untreatable prostate cancer could halt its spread and live longer
Jun 06 2018 by Kathy Alvarado
Researcher Prof Johann de Bono told the BBC: "This is the first evidence that a subset of prostate cancer patients do spectacularly well on immunotherapy". The latest trial, results of which were presented this weekend at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting in Chicago, examined the genetics of tumors and found that certain groups of prostate cancer patients may benefit from the treatment. "However, numerous men who was on the verge of death, was able to beat cancer due to this drug and more than 18 months they have not shown any of the signs of secondary cancer of the prostate".
De Bono said that while patients with DNA fix mutations responded to treatment, further investigation is still needed to confirm this.
Researchers from The Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust in London gave 258 men with the otherwise untreatable cancer the immunotherapy agent Keytruda (pembrolizumab). Then, in 2016, he received the immunotherapy drug called pembrolizumab. The drugs alter the body's immune system that focuses directly on tackling cancer.
"This is important as although immunotherapy is exciting, it can have severe side effects". The headline news from the study is that after one year over one third of men with an advanced form of the cancer were still alive and one-in-10 showed no further growth. These findings show the glimmer of promise for them'.
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Immunotherapy, which personalizes treatment based on the genetic make-up of tumors, is only successful for a minority of patients, professor Paul Workman, chief executive of the ICR, said in a statement.
That is not a given, as a course of treatment in other cancers typically costs tens of thousands of pounds per patient. Still, the authors said the study suggests a potential strategy for new therapies and hormonal treatment regimens that could narrow the prostate cancer survival disparity between blacks and whites.
Despite falling smoking rates, lung cancer is still Britain's biggest cancer killer, claiming 35,000 lives every year. AA plus leuprolide improved biochemical recurrence-free survival relative to leuprolide alone regardless of pretreatment PSA level, Gleason score, pathology, time to relapse from treatment, and definitive treatment type. Researchers looked at the ability of three different blood tests looking for free-floating DNA to detect cancer. More excitingly, it identified up to 50 per cent of early-stage tumours too.