BALTIMORE, June 11 (UPI) — U.S. scientists say a multi-center drug trial has shown the blood vessel-blocking drug tasquinimod is effective in slowing the progression of prostate cancer.
The clinical trial involving 200 patients at seven facilities showed the drug slowed the rate of disease progression by blocking new blood vessel development. The researchers said the drug added approximately 12 weeks of time the disease did not worsen. Tumors require vast networks of blood vessels to supply nutrients, scientists said.
“Given these results, we feel it is reasonable to move forward with Phase III studies,” said Dr. Michael Carducci, a professor at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Cente. Carducci will lead the next phase of an international study of the drug. “After exploring the drug as a single agent, we may study it in combination approaches with other prostate cancer drugs.”
The researchers said tasquinimod works by stopping new blood vessel development around the tumor, thereby stabilizing the disease, but it does not make existing vasculature disappear.
The study’s results were presented earlier this month in Chicago during a meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
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