Around 20,000 men a year with prostate cancer may benefit from this dual drug treatment which could double the life expectancy of prostate cancer patients.
A clinical trial run by Cancer Research UK – believed to be the biggest cancer treatment trial in the world – has found that giving two therapies at once cuts disease progression and offers some patients the chance of a cure.
The trial looked at abiraterone as an additional treatment in patients with prostate cancer who were about to start androgen-deprivation therapy.
“These are the most powerful results I’ve seen from a prostate cancer trial,” said Prof. Nicholas James from the University of Birmingham. “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.”
“Abiraterone is already used to treat some men whose disease has spread but our results show many more could benefit.”
“In addition to the improvements in survival and time without relapse, the drug reduced the rates of severe bone complications, a major problem in prostate cancer, by more than a half,” he added.
The results of the trial are published in the New England Journal of Medicine.