In a nutshell
This study aimed to evaluate the use of abiraterone (Zytiga) and olaparib (Lynparza) in advanced prostate cancer. This study concluded that olaparib in combination with abiraterone provided clinical benefit for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer compared with abiraterone alone.
Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is a standard treatment for treat advanced prostate cancer. It is used to decrease the amount of male hormones in the body, including testosterone. Abiraterone is a type of hormonal medication. Many men may become resistant to ADT, and other treatments are then needed.
Targeted therapies are treatments that target certain proteins involved in cancer growth. Olaparib is a type of targeted therapy that has been shown to be useful. The effectiveness of abiraterone and olaparib in advanced prostate cancer is unknown.
Methods & findings
This study aimed to evaluate the use of abiraterone and olaparib in advanced prostate cancer. 142 patients were randomly assigned to one of two groups. All patients received oral abiraterone once daily and a steroid dose twice daily. Half of the included patients received olaparib and the other half received a placebo (substance with no active effect). Patients were followed for an average of 15.9 to 24.5 months.
Survival without progression of cancer was 13.8 months for those on the olaparib and abiraterone treatment and 8.2 months with placebo and abiraterone.
There was a higher incidence of side-effects for patients on the olaparib and abiraterone treatment. 37% of the treatment group experienced nausea, compared to 18% of the placebo group. 25% of the treatment group experienced constipation, compared to 11% of the placebo group. Serious side effects were experienced by 54% of the treatment group and 28% of the placebo group. These included anemia (low red blood cell levels), pneumonia, and heart attack.
The bottom line
This study concluded that olaparib, in combination with abiraterone, improved time to disease progression for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer compared with abiraterone alone. More serious side-effects were observed in patients who received olaparib and abiraterone than abiraterone alone.
The fine print
This study was supported by AstraZeneca and Merck & Co., the co-developers of olaparib.
Published By :
The Lancet. Oncology
Jun 04, 2018
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