A number of important discoveries, therapeutic developments, and events related to prostate cancer were reported daily by Prostate Cancer News Today throughout 2016. Now that the year is over, it is time to briefly review the articles that appealed most to our readers. Here are the top 10 most-read articles of 2016, with a brief description of what made them interesting and relevant to prostate cancer patients, family members and caregivers.
An alternative to radical prostatectomy or active surveillance in early-stage prostate cancer patients received marketing approval in Mexico. The treatment, called Vascular Targeted Photodynamic therapy (VTP) with TOODAK Soluble, consists on the intravenous injection of a photosensitive drug that is activated specifically in the tumor site though thin optic fibers that are inserted in the cancer prostatic tissue, under ultrasound control. Data from a Phase 3 trial has shown that this minimally invasive procedure provides high cure rates, while sparing the patient’s quality of life.
The study, which retrospectively analyzed prostate cancer patients, showed that salvage radical prostatectomy, a currently underutilized treatment modality, could markedly improve long-term survival of patients who progressed following radiation therapy. The treatment involves the surgical removal of the prostate gland and surrounding tissue, using either a robotic technique or open surgery. The study showed that 10 years after undergoing surgery, 77.5% of patients were still alive.
This study revealed that alternately flooding and starving prostate tumors with testosterone, a treatment called bipolar androgen therapy, could safely treat metastatic prostate cancer patients who are resistant to chemical or surgical treatment. The treatment relies on data showing that testosterone actually can inhibit prostate tumor growth and kill cancer cells, and data presented at the 28th Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics revealed it can lower PSA levels in more than 40% of patients.
The study highlights that targeting cholesterol metabolism may be a promising approach to overcome resistance to hormone therapies. These therapies target the production of hormones, called androgens, that are required for prostate cancer growth. But nearly 100% of patients eventually develop resistance to such therapies. The researchers have found that targeting the cholesterol metabolism, which is specific to cancer cells, was able to eliminate the hormone resistance.
Prostate cancer patients are commonly treated with androgen deprivation therapy combined with promising immunotherapies that boost the immune system. But this article shows that androgen deprivation therapy can counter the effect of immunotherapies, suppressing the immune response. The findings highlight the need for carefully planning the dosing and timing of treatment administration when combination therapies are used.
A Phase 2a clinical trial demonstrated that topsalysin, a modified protein that causes localized cell death within the prostate tissue, induces high response rates in localized, low- to intermadiate-risk prostate cancer patients. Interim data from the first seven participants showed one complete response and three partial responses and revealed that the treatment was safe and well-tolerated by patients.
Prostate Cancer News Today hopes these developments, and new reports coming your way throughout 2017, ultimately will contribute to educate, inform and improve the lives of patients living with prostate cancer.
We wish all our readers a happy and inspiring 2017.