Adding abiraterone to hormone therapy at the start of treatment for prostate cancer improves survival by 37 per cent, according to the results of one of the largest-ever clinical trials for prostate cancer presented at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago and published in the New England Journal of Medicine on Saturday, June 3. The NEJM article is titled “Abiraterone Acetate Plus Prednisolone for Hormone-Naïve Prostate Cancer.” The ASCO abstract (LBA5003)is titled “Adding Abiraterone for Men with High-Risk Prostate Cancer (PCa) Starting Long-Term Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT): Survival Results from STAMPEDE (NCT00268476). The results from the Cancer Research UK-funded STAMPEDE trial could change the standard of care for men with prostate cancer, making abiraterone a first-line treatment alongside hormone therapy. This part of the STAMPEDE trial recruited approximately 1,900 patients. Half the men were treated with hormone therapy, while the other half received hormone therapy and abiraterone. In men who were given abiraterone there was a 70 per cent reduction in disease progression. The drug is usually given to men with advanced prostate cancer that has spread and has stopped responding to standard to hormone therapy, but this study shows the added benefit to patients who are about to start long-term hormone therapy. Professor Nicholas James, Chief Investigator of the Cancer Research UK-funded STAMPEDE trial from the University of Birmingham, said: "These are the most powerful results I've seen from a prostate cancer trial -- it's a once-in-a-career feeling. This is one of the biggest reductions in death I've seen in any clinical trial for adult cancers.
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