WEDNESDAY, June 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) — For men with metastatic, hormone-sensitive prostate cancer receiving testosterone suppression, enzalutamide is associated with significantly longer progression-free and overall survival, according to a study published online June 2 in the New England Journal of Medicine. The research was published to coincide with the annual meeting of the American Society for Clinical Oncology, held from May 31 to June 4 in Chicago.

Ian D. Davis, M.B., B.S., Ph.D., from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, and colleagues randomly assigned 1,125 men to receive testosterone suppression plus either open-label enzalutamide or a standard nonsteroidal antiandrogen therapy (standard care). Patients were followed for a median of 34 months.

The researchers noted 102 and 143 deaths in the enzalutamide and standard-care groups, respectively (hazard ratio, 0.67). Kaplan-Meier estimates of overall survival at three years were 80 and 72 percent in the enzalutamide and standard-care groups, respectively. The enzalutamide group also had longer prostate-specific antigen progression-free survival (174 versus 333 events, respectively; hazard ratio, 0.39) and clinical progression-free survival (167 and 320 events, respectively; hazard ratio, 0.40).

“The benefits of enzalutamide had already been established for prostate cancers that are no longer responding to hormonal therapy,” Davis said in a statement. “The actual result in patients starting hormonal therapy, noting patients had a 60 percent improvement in the time it takes to detect the cancer growing again along with a 33 percent [increased] chance of survival, was far higher than we expected.”

The study was partially funded by Astellas, the manufacturer of enzalutamide.

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