Ipilimumab, a drug used to treat melanoma, is being studied alone and in combination with radiation therapy for treating metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). The drug, which works by activating the body’s immune system to attack and destroy prostate cancer cells, has completed a phase I/II clinical trial involving 33 patients. Eight patients had more than a 50% decrease in their prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood levels, one had a complete response to treatment, and six had stable disease for 2.8 to 6.1 months. Most patients had manageable adverse side effects. Two phase III clinical trials are ongoing.
CureVac, a German biopharmaceutical company, announced the start of a phase IIb clinical trial of its vaccine, CV9104, for castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). The vaccine works by prompting the body’s own immune system to attack prostate cancer cells. The trial will enroll up to 200 patients across eight European countries who have never received chemotherapy for CRPC. For more information on the clinical trial click here.
“CureVac GmbH, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company that has pioneered the development of a new class of therapies and vaccines based on messenger RNA (mRNA), today announced that it has initiated a double-blind, randomized Phase 2b clinical trial of its RNActive® cancer vaccine, CV9104, for the treatment of patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer.”
“Four new therapies have been recently approved for the treatment of men with castration-resistant prostate cancer; still, more treatment options are needed. This review summarizes the data supporting a role for novel chemotherapies including epothilones and immunomodulators (IMiDs), as well as other novel agents within the new landscape of approved therapies.”
Researchers reviewed published clinical trials in order to summarize the results of immunotherapy and endothelin receptor antagonists for the treatment of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). They found that both types of treatment improve overall survival, but do not significantly improve progression-free survival or time to disease progression. The researchers feel that further studies are warranted.
Significant progress has been made in the understanding of AR-dependent and AR-independent mechanisms involved in the development of CRPC. This may lead to identification of new therapeutic targets and improved therapy.
The FDA recently approved a combination of two drugs—abiraterone and the steroid prednisone—for the treatment of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) in patients who have previously been treated with chemotherapy. Scientists are now testing whether the combination treatment is beneficial for patients who have not been treated with chemotherapy. Interim results indicate that the treatment doubles progression-free survival and increases overall survival from 30.1 months to 35.3 months.