Prostate cancer news reports: Saturday, May 23, 2009

Today’s news reports focus on four items:

  • Development of aggressive prostate cancer from a single cell and tumor
  • Prostate size and risk for positive surgical margins
  • Quality of urinary function after different types of surgery
  • Gefitinib as a single agent in treatment of CRPC

Liu et al. have shown that aggressive prostate cancers develop from a single cancer cell and the resulting tumor, and that even if a man has multiple foci of cancer in his prostate in the beginning, it is just one of those foci that causes cancer progression and metastasis over time.

Goetzl et al. have shown that, in a series of patients undergoing radical perineal prostatectomy at their institution, men with lighter (and therefore smaller) prostates are at higher risk for positive surgical margins than otherwise comparable men with heavier (and therefore larger) larger prostates. They advise that men with small prostates who are to have an RPP should be made aware of this increase in risk for positive surgical margins.

Abel et al., in a small, non-randomized study, have shown that men who have nerve-sparing surgery appear to do slightly better than men who have non-nerve-sparing surgery with respect to post-surgical urinary function and urinary “bother.” However, “This improvement was modest and is of unknown clinical significance.”

Pezaro et al. report that gefitinib (Iressa) has minimal activity when used on its own to treat men with castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC).

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