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Prostate cancer treatment 'could help more patients'

BBC News

One of the largest clinical trials for prostate cancer has given "powerful results", say UK researchers. A drug for treating prostate cancer that has spread was found to save lives when offered earlier, a study found. The trial looked at abiraterone as an additional treatment in patients with prostate cancer who were about to start long-term hormone therapy. Abiraterone improved survival, according to results published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Prof Nicholas James, from the University of Birmingham, who led the research, said: "These are the most powerful results I've seen from a prostate cancer trial - it's a once-in-a-career feeling.

Coronavirus: Prostate-cancer men swap chemo for precision drugs

BBC News

Men with advanced prostate cancer can take highly targeted hormone therapies at home instead of coming into hospital for chemotherapy, NHS England says. Experts say it will relieve pressure on the NHS, which wants all urgent and essential cancer treatments to continue during the coronavirus pandemic. The drugs are also smarter, kinder treatments and could extend the lives of many more patients, they say. This precision-medicine approach is already used to treat other cancers. Diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer in February, Stuart Fraser, 66, from Ashtead, in Surrey, will now take four enzalutamide tablets a day.

U-turn over prostate cancer drug

BBC News

Patients with prostate cancer in England will now have early access to a drug that can delay the need for chemotherapy. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence now agrees that abiraterone is affordable. It had previously said the treatment was not cost-effective for the NHS until cancers were more advanced. The drug costs 3,000 a month, but a lower price has been agreed with the manufacturer Janssen. Abiraterone, also known as Zytiga, is a hormone therapy, and unlike chemotherapy which kills the cancerous cells, it stops more testosterone from reaching the prostate gland to stifle the tumour.

The Lancet Oncology, December 2019, Volume 20, Issue 12, Pages 1615-1772, e654-e729


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Buckingham report shows we're winning war against cancer

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Finding a cure for cancer is one of the Holy Grails of medicine. However, a series of recent breakthroughs raises the prospect that we're finally getting to grips with the disease that half of us will develop. Cancer survival rates in the UK have doubled over the past 40 years and already half of cancer patients live for more than ten years. But according to Professor Karol Sikora, one of the country's leading specialists and dean of the University of Buckingham Medical School, in ten years that figure will be closer to 70 per cent, meaning that, for many, cancer will become a disease you live with, rather than die from. 'Over the past decade, there has been a huge increase in our understanding of the molecular changes that occur in the body's cells that lead to cancer,' he says.