Men with advanced prostate cancer could benefit from 'amazing' immunotherapy trial


Black patients experienced higher rates of several hormonal-based toxicities, such as hyperglycemia, hypokalemia, and hot flashes, "suggesting perhaps a greater exposure risk to this medicine", George said.

World-leading prostate cancer expert Professor Johann de Bono, of the Institute for Cancer Research, said: 'We hope for a cure but we can't call it that yet.

The study will focus on marker identification of those prostate cancer patients whose a tumor may shrink post the immunotherapy treatment.

"The next step will be to find out how to tell which men will benefit from taking this drug".

Your immune system is trained to fight infection, but it also attacks parts of the body if they malfunction - such as in cancers.

An worldwide trial led by The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust has shown that immunotherapy can benefit men with prostate cancer.

Researchers found those with the best response had types of prostate cancer with "ultra-mutant cancer cells" which change their genetic make-up quickly.

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Thanks to a new immunotherapy treatment, the men who just had a few weeks or months to live after getting diagnosed with prostate cancer could now survive for longer, a latest trail results showed. It is an IgG4 isotype antibody that blocks a protective mechanism of cancer cells, and allows the immune system to destroy those cancer cells.

Data from some other cancer types, such as bowel, has similarly shown tumours with defects in DNA fix mutations are more susceptible to immunotherapy. It seems to work incredibly well for a handful of patients, have a temporary effect in others, and do nothing for the rest.

"It's exciting that immunotherapy could offer some men more time with their loved ones where they have such advanced disease that they have run out of existing treatment options". Importantly, the medications only work for some patients.

"Our study provides prospective evidence that there might be inherited genes that could affect treatment response and track with African ancestry in prostate cancer patients", George said.

"One of the major challenges with immunotherapy is that we don't have many reliable tests to pick out who will benefit", Workman said.

The researchers also said that some of the patients who had substantial responses to the treatment have tumors that may have mutations in the genes that control DNA fix, an important cellular process that maintains the genome.