Welsh Government
Wales contributes to research success for patients with prostate cancer

Cancer research

Background

Prostate cancer accounts for around one fifth of all male cancers. In the UK there are around 40,000 new cases each year and around 10,000 deaths. Most men with advanced prostate cancer are given hormone therapy and this is often effective for a short time at stopping the tumour growing. However in most cases over time the tumour will start to grow again.

The aim of the STAMPEDE trial is to try to prevent the tumour re-growth and prolong survival by adding other treatment to the hormone therapy.

The Study

STAMPEDE (Systemic Therapy in Advancing or Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Evaluation of Drug Efficacy), is the largest randomised clinical trial of treatment for men with prostate cancer ever conducted, with nearly 7,000 patients enrolled since 2005.

All patients will have standard hormone therapy, but some will have other treatments as well. The aim of this trial is to see which treatment is best for prostate cancer.

Welsh cancer centres are key to the success of STAMPEDE: Velindre Cancer Centre is the highest recruiting centre for the entire trial.

This study received funding and support from Cancer Research UK, UK Medical Research Council, the UK National Cancer Research Institute, the UK Department of Health, Sanofi-Aventis, Novartis, Pfizer, Janssen, and Astellas, with the Chief Investigator supported by University of Birmingham and University of Warwick.

Impact

The results show that adding the chemotherapy drug docetaxel to standard hormone therapy improves survival for men with advanced, hormone-naive prostate cancer.*

Vice Chair of the STAMPEDE Trial Management Group, Professor Malcolm Mason, Cardiff University said: “This study is changing the whole treatment paradigm for men with metastatic disease, and in time may do the same for men with high risk, localised disease. This effect is being felt worldwide and I think it is an achievement of which Wales should be proud. Putting together the recruitment of patients from Welsh Cancer Centres, Wales easily outnumbers any other centres, worldwide.”

Professor John Wagstaff at South West Wales Cancer Institute & Swansea University College of Medicine, Swansea said: “The improvement in average survival of 22 months for men with metastatic prostate cancer is almost unprecedented in the world of oncology. I think that it is a great tribute to the men who took part in this trial and their families that Welsh patients have contributed so much to the success of this trial.”

Dr John Staffurth Reader in Oncology, Cardiff University and Consultant at Velindre Cancer Centre said: “this is an amazing result for men with advanced prostate cancer that will change practice for ever. I am proud of my patients that have taken part in this trial and would like to acknowledge the fantastic effort from the research nurses across Wales, not just in the cancer centres.“

Links:

Cancer Research UK: http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/find-a-clinical-trial/a-trial-looking-at-hormone-therapy-with-zoledronic-acid-docetaxel-or-celecoxib-for-prostate-cancer

Medical Research Centre Clinical Trials Unit: http://www.ctu.mrc.ac.uk/our_research/research_areas/cancer/studies/stampede/

American Society for Clinical Oncology abstract: http://meetinglibrary.asco.org/content/147721-156

*J Clin Oncol 33, 2015 (suppl; abstr 5001)