PARP Inhibitors May Be Effective for Advanced Prostate Cancer

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Research presented at the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Cancer Conference in Liverpool, United Kingdom, has demonstrated that olaparib, a novel PARP inhibitor set to be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of ovarian cancer, may also be a possible treatment for advanced prostate cancer.

According to Johann de Bono, Professor of Experimental Cancer Therapeutics at The Institute of Cancer Research in London, England, and Honorary Consultant at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, olaparib has been effective at treating some patients with advanced, aggressive prostate cancer.

A phase 2 trial known as TO-PARP being conducted by researchers at The Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust is investigating the use of olaparib in advanced prostate cancer.

The first part of the study has been completed and results are being analyzed. PARP inhibitors, such as olaparib, have typically been studied in women with BRCA genetic mutations, but preliminary results have been positive in other cancers with DNA repair mutations. PARP inhibitors have been promising investigational cancer treatments because they have fewer adverse effects than chemotherapy.

PARP Inhibitors May Be Effective for Advanced Prostate Cancer
Novel PARP inhibitor may be a possible treatment for advanced prostate cancer.

A pioneering cancer drug set to become the first to be approved specifically for inherited cancers could also be used much more widely to treat prostate cancer, a world-leading expert has said. Delegates at the UK's leading annual cancer conference heard that olaparib, which last month was recommended for approval for women with ovarian cancer and inherited BRCA mutations, is also showing promise in advanced prostate cancer.

Professor Johann de Bono, leader of a succession of major international prostate cancer trials, told the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Cancer Conference in Liverpool that the PARP inhibitor olaparib could be effective against prostate tumours that harboured particular gene mutations, even where the damaged genes were not inherited.

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