OHSU develops promising prostate cancer drug

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by Katherine Cook, KGW Reporter

KREM.com

Posted on October 30, 2013 at 7:59 AM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 8:01 AM

PORTLAND – There is a promising development in the fight against prostate cancer.

Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University's Knight Cancer Institute conducted a double blind study, testing a new drug called Enzalutamide.

Half of the 1,700 patients got the real pill. The other half got a placebo. Results were so impressive that researchers stopped the trial and gave the pill to the placebo group, too.

"This is both unusual and very exciting," said Dr. Tomasz Beer, Deputy Director of the Knight Cancer Institute.

"We saw a 30 percent improvement in overall survival and 81 percent improvement in time to cancer progression," said Beer.

Enzalutamide is a hormone-based pill that patients can take at home. Unlike chemotherapy, it produced very few side effects in patients.

Beer stressed that Enzalutamide is not a cure for prostate cancer. Rather, he said it showed promise of helping patients control the disease and live a normal life.

Enzalutamide still has to be approved by the FDA before it's available to the public.

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