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Future Therapies for Prostate Cancer

New therapeutics for the treatment of advanced prostate cancer are continuously under investigation.

Following are a few notable options currently undergoing trials:


Alpharadin is being developed by the Algeta ASA in a partnership with Bayer. Alpharadin uses alpha radiation from radium-223 decay to kill cancer cells. Radium is a calcium mimetic that is taken up by bone, where it emits alpha-particles, leading to cancer cell death. Alpha radiation causes less damage to surrounding healthy tissues (particularly bone marrow).


Cabozantinib, formerly known as XL184, is a potent dual inhibitor of the MET and VEGF pathways designed to block MET driven tumor escape. In multiple preclinical studies, cabozantinib has been shown to kill tumor cells, reduce metastases, and inhibit angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels necessary to support tumor growth).


PROSTVAC® is a therapeutic cancer vaccine, manufactured by Bavarian Nordic. It has been developed based upon the hypothesis that immunotherapies can stimulate one's own immune system to fight cancer, and works by inducing a specific, targeted immune response against prostate cancer cells. It has been investigated in more than 500 patients and in a Phase II study has improved survival by an average of 8.5 months, while maintaining a good safety and tolerability profile. The Phase III PROSPECT clinical trial is currently recruiting patients.


BPX-101 is an autologous DeCIDe™ vaccine for the treatment of patients with metastatic castrate resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), made by Bellicum pharmaceuticals. BPX-101 is comprised of matured, prostate cancer antigen-expressing dendritic cells derived from monocytes collected from the patient in a leukapheresis procedure, and modified so that they can be activated by a proprietary drug, AP1903. BPX-101 is administered intradermally.


Ipilimumab is an FDA-approved human monoclonal antibody developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb which works by activating the immune system. It is currently used for the treatment of melanoma but is undergoing clinical trials for use in lung cancers and in metastatic castrate resistant prostate cancers both before and after using docetaxel chemotherapy.


Orteronel is an experimental drug for the treatment of cancer under development by Millennium Pharmaceuticals. Orteronel is an inhibitor of the enzyme CYP17A1 and is currently in Phase III clinical trials for metastatic, hormone-refractory prostate cancer.