Karmanos genitourinary team leader contributes to article on prostate cancer in New England Journal of Medicine

Mon Apr 8, 2013 7:05am EDT

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DETROIT,  April 8, 2013  /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --  Ulka Vaishampayan, M.D.,
leader of the Genitourinary Oncology Multidisciplinary Team at the Barbara Ann
Karmanos Cancer Center, has contributed to an article just published in The New
England Journal of Medicine comparing two different therapeutic methods in the
treatment of metastatic, hormone-sensitive prostate cancer that becomes
unresponsive to traditional methods of therapy.

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20071106/KARMANOSLOGO)  

The article is titled, "intermittent versus Continuous Androgen Deprivation in
Hormone Sensitive Metastatic Prostate Cancer Patients: Results of S9346
(INT-0162) an International Phase III Trial." Fellow authors come from across
America and internationally. The lead author, Maha Hussain, M.D., is from the 
University of Michigan.

The Phase III trial began in 1995 and was completed in 2008 though patient
follow-up has continued since completion. A total of 3,040 patients were accrued
for the trial and 1,535 patients were randomized into receiving either complete
androgen-deprivation therapy or intermittent androgen-deprivation therapy.
Karmanos researchers recruited 112 patients onto the clinical trial, which
represents one of the largest single institution accruals, according to Dr.
Vaishampayan.

The objective of the trial was to determine whether survival using intermittent
androgen deprivation would provide better survival rates and quality of life for
men compared to continuous androgen deprivation.  Prostate cancer is an
androgen-dependent disease and continuous androgen deprivation has been the
standard therapy for metastatic (cancer that has spread), hormone-sensitive
disease. Androgen is a male sex hormone, which includes testosterone.

Researchers ultimately determined that intermittent androgen deprivation does
not achieve comparable survival rates compared to complete androgen deprivation
therapy, though it does provide small improvements in quality of life (i.e.
emotional well-being and sexual function) for men with prostate cancer, but only
in the first three months of receiving the intermittent therapy.

Previous studies showed that intermittent androgen deprivation had prolonged the
time between disease diagnosis and development of 'castrate-resistant' disease.

All patients on the trial had a form of prostate cancer that is referred to as
'castrate-resistant,' a stage of prostate cancer when the traditional
testosterone suppression treatment is no longer effective against the cancer.

Dr. Vaishampayan noted that all men who are diagnosed with metastatic,
hormone-sensitive prostate cancer on androgen deprivation become
castrate-resistant within a median of 18-24 months after their initial
diagnosis. The study established parameters for assessing the risk factors of
early onset castrate-resistant disease, she said.

"The information that complete androgen deprivation and intermittent androgen
deprivation have different survival outcomes should be an important factor
during patient and physician discussions and decisions regarding the risks and
benefits of androgen-deprivation therapy," Dr. Vaishampayan said. "This national
trial addressed an important question and involved tremendous effort, patients
and collaboration.

"I am proud to represent a fine institution like Karmanos Cancer Center, which
is committed to clinical research for improving outcomes in patients with
prostate cancer," she added. "I am indebted to the patients who enrolled in this
trial and, in turn, helped countless others afflicted with the disease.
Karmanos' clinical trials staff also was very dedicated to the cause and worked
tirelessly to help us achieve our goals."       

About the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute  
Located in mid-town  Detroit, Michigan, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer
Institute is one of 41 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer
centers in  the United States. Caring for nearly 6,000 new patients annually on
a budget of  $265 million, conducting more than 700 cancer-specific scientific
investigation programs and clinical trials, Karmanos is among the nation's best
cancer centers. Through the commitment of 1,000 staff, including nearly 300
physicians and researchers on faculty at the  Wayne State University  School of
Medicine, and supported by thousands of volunteer and financial donors, Karmanos
strives to prevent, detect and eradicate all forms of cancer. Its long-term
partnership with the WSU School of Medicine enhances the collaboration of
critical research and academics related to cancer care.  Gerold Bepler, M.D.,
Ph.D., is the Institute's president and chief executive officer. For more
information call 1-800-KARMANOS or go to  www.karmanos.org.

SOURCE  Karmanos Cancer Institute

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