Researchers reported a number of important findings in prostate cancer treatment at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology:

Androgen receptor inhibitors evaluated in treatment of metastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer

Two trials evaluated the use of androgen receptor inhibitors, in combination with standard-of-care testosterone suppression therapy, for the treatment of metastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer.

Results of the phase III ENZAMET trial showed that 80 percent of men with metastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer were alive three years after being given the anti-androgen drug enzalutamide, along with testosterone suppression therapy. Similar results were found in the phase III TITAN trial, which evaluated the anti-androgen drug apalutamide in combination with testosterone suppression therapy.

What Patients Need to Know

Both enzalutamide and apalutamide block male hormones from attaching to prostate cancer cells. As a result, these drugs can slow the growth of (or destroy) prostate tumors.

Investigational drug studied as treatment for nonmetastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer

ARAMIS, a phase III trial, showed the addition of the investigational drug darolutamide to testosterone suppression therapy delayed the spread of nonmetastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer to other parts of the body. Darolutamide, like enzalutamide and apalutamide, is an androgen receptor inhibitor.

What Patients Need to Know

The ARAMIS trial also found that darolutamide reduced pain progression by approximately 40 percent, as compared with placebo.

PARP inhibitor studied as treatment for certain metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancers

The phase II TOPARP-B trial found that the PARP inhibitor olaparib seemed to exhibit antitumor activity and delay disease progression in the subset of metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancers with DNA repair defects.

Tumors with defects in the BRCA1/2 gene were most sensitive to olaparib, but responses were also seen in tumors with other types of defects.

What Patients Need to Know

Olaparib blocks proteins called PARP; by doing so, the drug prevents cancer cells from repairing their damaged DNA, which can cause cancer cells to die.