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Men in the UK with advanced prostate cancer could receive a revolutionary pill within 12 months.
Trial results for the drug, abiraterone acetate, have proven so successful that applications will now be made for the drug to be shipped across the globe.
The risk of death for men receiving the treatment dropped by 35%, while the survival chances were lifted by 36% from a midpoint of 10.9 to 14.8 months.
The Phase III trial of the treatment was cancelled on ethical grounds when those receiving the treatment were clearly doing a lot better than others given a placebo “dummy” drug.
Study leader Dr Johan de Bono, from the Institute of Cancer Research based in London and Surrey, explained that the findings could offer a lifeline for men with the illness.
He said: “This is extremely exciting because men with this aggressive type of prostate cancer currently have very few treatment options and a poor prognosis.
“Around one man in the UK dies every hour from this disease, so the news that abiraterone acetate may extend survival with manageable side-effects will be incredibly important to men with prostate cancer and their families.”
Results from the trial were presented on October 11 at the European Society for Medical Oncology Congress in Milan, Italy.
Copyright Press Association 2010