Prostate cancer slide. Image Credit: James Benet/Getty Images

Health Switzerland3. July 2021

New Radioactive Therapy “Smart-Bombs” Prostate Cancer Tumors

A Swiss pharmaceutical company has developed an experimental radioactive therapy destined to prolong the life of prostate cancer patients who resist other treatments, paving the way to a new form of cancer therapy.

“This is something new — you’re driving radiation right to cancer itself,” says Karen Knudsen, president, and chief executive of the American Cancer Society. “It’s a much more sophisticated strategy for targeting the tumor. You’re not just destroying the cancer cells — you’re smart-bombing the place that the tumor has found for itself to live.”

The treatment developed by Novartis consists of a radioactive molecule injection that targets the prostate-specific membrane antigen protein found on the surface of prostate cancer cells. The radioactive treatment causes less damage to surrounding tissues, opening the door to “precision radiotherapy […] on the surface of other cancer cells,” says Dr. Philip Kantoff, chairman of medicine at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. The new therapy resulted in a 40% reduction of deaths among men compared with the standard treatment.

The New York Times

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