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What are emerging therapies for prostate cancer?

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Researchers are pursuing several new ways to treat advanced prostate cancer. Vaccines that alter the body's immune system and use genetically modified viruses show the most promise. One vaccine technique works by manipulating blood cells from the patient's immune system and causing them to attack the prostate cancer. Blood is drawn from the patient. From the blood sample, cells that are part of the immune system (called dendritic cells) are exposed to cells that make up prostate cancer. Then the blood cells are placed back in the body, with the hope that they will cause other immune system cells to attack the prostate cancer. In a more traditional type of vaccine, the patient is injected with a virus that contains prostate specific antigen (PSA). When the body is exposed to the virus, it becomes sensitized to cells in the body that contain PSA and his immune system attacks them.

Immune or genetic therapy have the potential to deliver more targeted, less invasive treatments for advanced prostate cancer. This would result in fewer side effects and better control of the prostate cancer.

SOURCES: 

American Cancer Society. 

National Cancer Institute. 

Cancer Research UK.  

News release, Astellas Pharma Inc.

UpToDate.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on July 24, 2018

SOURCES: 

American Cancer Society. 

National Cancer Institute. 

Cancer Research UK.  

News release, Astellas Pharma Inc.

UpToDate.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on July 24, 2018

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