Calvary and Hunter collaboration enables clinical trial access to an effective new treatment for men with advanced prostate cancer

The collaboration offers local men access to a new type of cancer treatment

A recent collaboration between Medical Oncology Research at Calvary Mater Newcastle and the Department of Nuclear Medicine at Hunter New England Local Health District enables local men to get access to this unique trial of a new kind of treatment, up until now just available in capital cities.

The results from the Australian and New Zealand Urogenital and Prostate Cancer Trials Group (ANZUP) “TheraP” (ANZUP 1603) trial released earlier this year confirmed the effectiveness of a new class of therapy for men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer.

Dr Craig Gedye, Senior Staff Specialist Medical Oncology at Calvary Mater Newcastle, explained that prostate cancer that has spread can be treated with hormones and chemotherapy, but if these fail different treatments are needed.

“Giving injections of radioactive drugs has been a standard treatment for thyroid cancer and some rare cancers, but this is a new treatment idea for prostate cancer,” he said.

“This clinical trial is important as it shows that Lu-PSMA is at least as effective as chemotherapy, but has less side-effects. We are really grateful to the Nuclear Medicine team who have enabled the delivery of this new treatment here in Newcastle.”

The results of this trial were recently published in the prestigious journal, The Lancet, as well as being presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.

The TheraP trial was the first “theranostics” trial to be offered at Calvary Mater Newcastle through this new collaboration. The hospital’s Medical Oncology Research Trials have since opened a new theranostics trial (called ‘ENZA-p’), combining Lu-PSMA and hormone tablets in men with advanced prostate cancer.

Dr Natalie Rutherford, Clinical Director of Nuclear Medicine at Hunter New England Local Health District, said it is exciting to be able to bring this advanced nuclear medicine treatment to the Hunter region.

“It is humbling to see that the treatment compared favorably with existing treatments,” she said.

“We are keen to explore how we can bring this treatment to men with advanced prostate cancer routinely.”

TheraP (ANZUP 1603) is a partnership between ANZUP Cancer Trials Group and the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) with support from the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), the Australasian Radiopharmaceutical Trials Network (ARTnet), Endocyte Inc, a Novartis company, It’s a Bloke Thing, Movember and CAN4CANCER and The University of Sydney NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre providing central study coordination.