Adding abiraterone to standard hormone therapy improves survival in advanced prostate cancer

Previously, treatment for new metastatic prostate cancer had been to treat with hormone therapy (androgen deprivation therapy to deplete testosterone levels) with possibly adding chemotherapy for higher risk patients.

A recent study called the LATITUDE study showed that patients who received androgen deprivation therapy along with a drug called abitaterone acetate (a pill that further depletes cancer cells ability to use testosterone) lived longer on average than those that received androgen deprivation therapy without abiraterone.  Currently, abiraterone is approved for patients with metastatic prostate cancer after cancer grows on abiraterone (called castrate-resistant prostate cancer).

Based on this trial, it seems that moving abiraterone to an earlier setting helps keep the prostate cancer under control for a longer period of time (33mos vs 14 mos), which leads to better overall survival.  Therefore, it is important to include a medical oncologist familiar with these new trials comparing chemotherapy, androgen treatment and newer medicines into any treatment of metastatic prostate cancer.

Read more about the study here at Prostate Cancer Foundation.