What happened at the GU Cancers Symposium yesterday?


So at the Genitourinary Cancers Symposium yesterday in San Francisco we were treated to:

  • Numerous oral presentations that included
    • Pro/con debates on all sorts of different subjects
    • Truly new data on new forms of therapy
    • Extensive information on the evolving appreciation of how genetics and genomics affect prostate cancer progression and treatment
    • A whole bunch of other stuff
  • Nearly 300 poster presentations

Frankly, it is becoming near to overwhelming. The speed at which new information is being created is enormous. However, the relative quantity of definitive, practice-changing knowledge that is being created is actually small.

It is arguable that (apart from the data from the SPARTAN and the PROSPER trials) the only other truly practice-changing information presented yesterday was confirmatory data from the long-term follow-up of the TROG 03.04 (RADAR) trial, showing that, for most patients with high-risk locally advanced prostate cancer, the ideal period on treatment with ADT is probably 18 months (as opposed to a longer period of ADT) in combination with external beam radiation therapy (see Joseph et al.).

Now your sitemaster wants to be clear that there was a lot of other interesting data presented during the course of the day. It ranged from data on how to appropriately discuss PSA-based screening with specific groups of patients through to combination immunotherapies for mCRPC and the continuing belief (still formally unproven) that men with prostate cancer who take a statin have longer life expectancies than men who are not on a statin.

It’s probably going to take your sitemaster a little time to assimilate all of this information and see if there some very specific pieces of new knowledge that are really useful for the braid patient community.

And just to add some icing to the cake … there will be another 50 or so additional prostate cancer posters to look through today!

3 Responses

  1. So when I read the Joseph abstract (from the link you provided) I got a different impression (though I’m not confident because it was confusing). It looks like everyone eventually got 18m of ADT — so there was no evidence that longer or shorter ADT might be better (or worse). The main change was whether Zoledronate added anything — it did not (at least that was the conclusion).

  2. For investments, we have the “Oracle of Omaha.” For prostate cancer, we fortunately have two oracles — Mike Scott and Allen Edel. Can’t thank you guys enough for what you do. I’m afraid, however, that we can’t ever allow you to retire. No good deed…

  3. Dear Peter:

    If you have another look at the abstract, you will see that the trial was carefully designed to do two things: (a) Test whether 18 months of ADT was batter than 6 months of ADT (which it very definitely was in this group of men), and they did not all get 18 months of ADT at all. (b) Test whether adding zoledronate was beneficial (and it was not).

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