Department of Oncology and UOC of Medical Oncology, Ospedale San Donato, Arezzo, Italy.
Docetaxel-based therapy is established as the standard first-line chemotherapy in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), based on results from two landmark Phase III studies. However, prognosis remains poor, with a median survival of less than 2 years. There is no standard of care for patients who progress during or after docetaxel treatment, which represents a real unmet medical need. Several small retrospective studies suggest that patients with mCRPC who responded to first-line docetaxel-based therapy are sensitive to re-treatment, but a survival benefit in prospective randomized trials has not been demonstrated. Epithelial-stromal interactions in the tumour microenvironment appear to play a central role in prostate cancer progression and response to therapy. Recent insights into the molecular mechanisms that underpin prostate cancer progression have allowed the identification of potential therapeutic targets. New agents, including angiogenesis inhibitors, hormone therapies, chemotherapies, bone targeting agents, vaccines and immunotherapies are currently undergoing clinical development in advanced prostate cancer using docetaxel as a backbone. Several Phase III studies have now been completed. Sipuleucel-T prolonged survival compared with placebo in asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic patients with mCRPC. Cabazitaxel plus prednisone prolonged survival in patients with mCRPC who progressed during or after docetaxel-based therapy compared with the active agent mitoxantrone, plus prednisone. Multidisciplinary management and optimization of the role and timing of new agents in this evolving treatment continuum will be critical to maximizing patient outcomes. Identification of predictive markers and better gene expression profiling will be critical to tailoring therapies to individual patients and disease states, whereas validated surrogate markers of overall survival will help accelerate drug approval.
Bracarda S, Logothetis C, Sternberg CN, Oudard S. Are you the author?
Reference: BJU Int. 2011 Apr;107 Suppl 2:13-20.