ACTA Member finds prostate cancer pill gives patients 30% better survival rate


Prostate cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in Australian men, and one in every seven men will be diagnosed with the disease by the age of 85. It’s no surprise then, that Australian researchers are investigating treatments to give patients the best chance of survival.

Led by ACTA Member the Australian and New Zealand Urogenital and Prostate Cancer Trials Group (ANZUP), the ENZAMET (Addition of Enzalutamide to Standard of Care in Metastatic Hormone-Sensitive Prostate Cancer) investigator-led clinical trial was able to ascertain that giving enzalutamide to patients who are just starting androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) reduced the risk of death at 3-years by a third.

The addition of Enzalutamide as a therapy also significantly increased the time until the cancer showed signs of growing.

ANZUP Chair, Professor Ian Davis said that around 3,500 Australian men will die from prostate cancer this year, highlighting the urgency of finding new treatments, and ways of using established treatments better.

“Prostate cancer is complex and so are the benefits, side effects and risks of multiple treatments.

“Clinical trials are the most effective way of determining which treatments, alone or in combination, will provide the greatest survival benefit to the patient with the least adverse outcomes,” said Professor Davis.

The findings from the ENZAMET trial will mean that once Enzalutamide is available, men with metastatic prostate cancer will have another treatment option.

ENZAMET is an international investigator-initiated trial led by ANZUP and sponsored by the University of Sydney, which began in 2014. The trial recruited 1125 patients from 83 medical centres around the world. The study is led by the Australian and New Zealand Urogenital and Prostate (ANZUP) Cancer Trials Group.

The findings of the trial were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, and presented in the Plenary Session at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Scientific Meeting in Chicago on Sunday 2 June. Read more about the study here.