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New Blood Test Could Help In Treating Prostate Cancer

First Posted: May 05, 2017 04:20 AM EDT
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Scientists discovered a blood test that could help in the treatment of prostate cancer in men. The new blood test could tell which individuals with prostate cancer would likely respond to new drugs.

The study involved 265 men diagnosed with prostate cancer. The researchers analyzed their blood. They discovered that those that had several copies of a certain gene did not respond to abiraterone and enzalutamide. These drugs are usually given to patients to treat advanced cases and whose cancer is no longer responding to hormone therapy and began to spread, according to BBC News.

The new test that cost less than £50 ($65) is the fastest and inexpensive way of inhibiting men from experiencing the side effects of therapy that might fail. Dr. Gerhardt Attard, the lead researcher from the Center for Evolution and Cancer at the Institute of Cancer Research in London, said that abiraterone and enzalutamide are the best treatments for advanced prostate cancer and some men could consume these drugs for years without seeing a return of their cancer. On the other hand, these drugs do not work well and the disease returns. He further said that there is no approved test to help doctors select whether these are the best treatments for the patient.

That is the reason why the researchers develop a new way that could help in treating prostate cancer. Dr. Attard said that they have created a powerful test that can be utilized in the clinic to pick out which men with advanced prostate cancer would likely respond to abiraterone and enzalutamide and which men might need alternative treatments. Meanwhile, Dr. Iain Frame, the director of research at Prostate Cancer U.K., said that the test could be an important step toward moving away from a "one-size-fits-all" approach to the cure of prostate cancer.

The researchers are now examining the test in prospective clinical trials. They are also hoping that it will become part of standard patient care. The findings of the study were printed in the journal Annals of Oncology, according to ITV.

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