Learn More about Prostate Cancer Research Studies
What Are Prostate Cancer Research Studies?
Prostate gland cancer, as the name suggests, is the cancer of the prostate gland, and it occurs when prostate gland cells begin to multiply uncontrollably. A gland solely present in men, the prostate's main job is to produce part of the substance that goes into making semen. Therefore, only men can develop prostate cancer.
The prostate sits in the front of your rectum and underneath the bladder. Seminal vesicles, a group of glands, are situated behind your prostate and are crucial in producing the liquid that goes into making the semen. There are multiple types of prostate cancer; to determine the types, medical practitioners usually look at where the prostate cancer cells started to grow.
Prostate cancer research studies focus on a broad spectrum of topics, such as determining the cause of prostate cancer, speeding up detection, looking for indicators that may signal a person has early stages of prostate cancer, and possibly finding a suitable treatment and cure.
Professionals from several medical fields collaborate to study people with a history of prostate cancer or who are presently battling the disease and perform tests on them to find answers in prostate cancer research studies.
Why Is Prostate Cancer Being Studied Through Research Studies?
Did you know that the most prevalent cancer in America is prostate cancer? According to a renowned organization's findings, there were around 268,490 new prostate cancer diagnoses in the US in 2022, out of which 34,500 resulted in fatalities.
Furthermore, Prostate cancer is also the second most frequently diagnosed cancer in males and the fourth most prevalent cancer worldwide. In 2020, there were about 1.4 million brand-new diagnoses of prostate cancer. The growing cases of Prostate cancer in the US and worldwide are alarming, which is why the need for research studies on this condition is higher than ever.
Prostate cancer research studies can help scientists find possible patterns and similarities in the lifestyles or other areas of people with prostate cancer to determine what may be causing this condition and help distinguish possible preventive measures.
It is critical to study this illness because apart from the lives it takes each year, prostate cancer can become a painful illness and have several negative impacts on the lives of the people who have it. Prostate cancer can seriously affect the sex lives of individuals due to symptoms like dry orgasm or loss of libido, which can be detrimental to their relationships.
Moreover, it can create fertility issues in men, making it hard for couples to have children, which is difficult to accept for people who wish to start a family.
Prostate cancer research studies can also help discover possible treatment options with fewer side effects. The prostate cancer treatment options now have several side effects, e.g., radiation can cause fertility issues and birth disabilities, and chemotherapy can cause hair loss, weight loss, nausea, weakness, vomiting, and much more.
Studies have proven that people undergoing prostate cancer treatments like radical prostatectomy have PTSD symptoms afterward. Therefore, these side effects further add to patients’ suffering, making the recovery process more difficult and traumatizing.
What Are The Types Of Treatments Available For Prostate Cancer?
There are several treatment options that doctors may recommend to treat prostate cancer. The treatment plans for patients with prostate cancer may vary depending on the type of prostate cancer you have, the stage of prostate cancer, the location, and age. Here are a few treatment options currently being used to treat prostate cancer.
Radiation therapy involves the use of Ionizing radiation to eliminate malignant cells. The DNA of the cancerous cells is damaged during this therapy. When you undergo radiation treatment, the cancerous cells are killed, and their chances of multiplying are eliminated.
Radiation treatment is an effective treatment option to kill locally progressed or localized prostate cancer and is known to have a similar cure rate to surgical interventions. During the procedure, a linear accelerator produces beams and directs them toward the prostate gland.
The radiation is administered in many methods, such as EBR, which involves sending energy beams to the skin surrounding the prostate glands. Brachytherapy is another method that consists in using seeds inserted in the body of patients with the illness. Radiation oncologists with expertise who practice at active institutes are ideally suited to administer radiation treatment.
Immunotherapy involves the usage of medications to help the body's immune system identify and eliminate cancerous cells more efficiently. Therefore, your doctor may recommend immunotherapy techniques as a part of your prostate cancer treatment.
Sipuleucel-T vaccination treatment may be one possibility for certain men with prostate cancer who might have minimal or close to no prostate cancer symptoms and who have not received chemotherapy. Each prostate cancer patient gets a unique dosage of sipuleucel-T.
Before beginning treatment, patients have to go through Leukapheresisa, which is a procedure that involves the removal of blood from the patient. This is done before starting treatment, where therapy-specialized immune cells are collected out of the patient's blood, altered in a laboratory, and then reinjected.
Afterward, the patient's immune system detects and eliminates cancerous cells and keeps them from multiplying.
Prostate Removal Surgery
The malignant prostate gland is removed during prostate cancer removal surgery. Prostate cancer which is either in its early stages or has only progressed to the prostate, and no other organs can be treated surgically. This surgery is occasionally used with other medications to potentially treat prostate cancer that may have progressed to the advanced stages.
The doctors make minor incisions in your abdominal area during the procedure. Laparoscopic prostatectomy usually involves using a robotic device with medical equipment attached to it. The surgeon directs the robotic device to manipulate the tools while seated at a panel and using hand controls.
This approach is used in the majority of prostate cancer surgeries worldwide.
Chemotherapy incorporates medications to reduce or eliminate malignant cells and potentially prevent their regrowth. Docetaxel is the most often used chemotherapy treatment for patients with prostate cancer.
It is typically administered alongside the steroid drug called prednisone. Most patients who start taking docetaxel experience positive results. Your doctor may advise multiple chemotherapy rounds depending on your disease's severity.
Targeted medicinal therapies concentrate on certain defects that are prevalent in malignant cells. Targeted medication therapies can kill cancer cells by suppressing these abnormalities. If hormone treatment is ineffective for a patient, targeted therapy medications may be suggested to successfully treat recurring prostate cancer in the advanced stage.
Some cancer treatments are only effective for patients whose cancerous cells contain specific genetic abnormalities. It is possible to test such medications on your cancer cells within a laboratory before beginning target therapy to determine whether they can benefit you.
Some prostate cancers, and other malignancies like breast cancers that depend on hormones for growth, are treated with hormone therapies. This type of cancer treatment slows or prevents the development of cancerous cells, which depends on hormones for survival. Other names for hormone therapy include hormone treatment, endocrine therapy, and hormonal therapy.
Hormone therapy involves administering injections in the hip, leg, or arm regions. This treatment helps reduce disease symptoms in prostate cancer patients, like reducing the discomfort caused by a malignant tumor.
This type of injection used in hormone therapy is called intramuscular injection. Additionally, certain varieties known as subcutaneous are administered directly beneath the abdominal skin.
Cryotherapy involves the process of freezing the Prostate tissues, which works by killing cancerous cells. The process consists of the insertion of metal probes within the skin near the prostate area. The probes contain a substance that freezes the tissues in the area.
Cryotherapy is a standard treatment option when cancer has returned following radiation therapy. It could be possible for people with early-stage prostate cancer who cannot undergo radiation or surgery. Cryotherapy is not typically used as the first treatment method for patients with prostate cancer.
What Are Some Breakthrough Research Studies For Prostate Cancer?
In recent decades, there have been a couple of major studies on prostate cancer. Below are the most noteworthy Prostate cancer research studies:
2022: The First FDA-Approved Radiotherapeutical for Treatment of Prostate Cancer - This study looks at the effectiveness of Pluvicto, a brand-new radiation medication that has received FDA approval, for the treatment of prostate cancer. The drug is administered to prostate cancer patients via injection or intravenous infusion.
PSMA biomarker—a protein present in the majority of malignant cells in the prostate, is a target for the medicine as it circulates all across the body. The cancer cells are subsequently damaged and killed by radiation. The medicine selectively targets progressing, metastatic, PSMA-positive, castration-resistant prostate cancer.
According to the research, even if a patient has prostate cancer of advanced stages, this medication helps those individuals survive longer. The study demonstrates astounding PSA responses of at minimum 50% in 64% of all cases of prostate cancer.
2006: Hormonal Therapy for Prostate Cancer - This study reviews hormonal therapy's effectiveness in treating prostate cancer. The FDA will only approve hormonal therapies for prostate cancer if they can show that castrate testosterone levels have been reached. The study demonstrates that the likelihood of severe consequences of prostate cancer is greatly reduced if hormone treatment is started early.
Who Are Some Of The Key Opinion Leaders / Researchers In Prostate Cancer Research Studies?
Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF)
PCF is an organization that provides funding for Prostate cancer research studies investigating prostate cancer treatment and prevention. Their headquarters sit in the Santa Monica district, CA. Thanks to PCF's initiatives, several advancements have been developed in treating early and advanced prostate cancers.
The findings of these investigations have sped up the creation of gene therapy techniques and vaccinations that direct the human immune response to eradicate cancerous cells.
Cancer Research Institute (CRI)
CRI is a non-profit institute in NYC that supports cancer research studies, including prostate cancer research in the United States. They are a financing body for research instead of a research institution themselves, cooperating with other organizations and institutions.
They have played a major role in the success of several prostate cancer research studies that have helped streamline treatment. The organization was established in 1953 to discover immunologically-based therapies for different cancers, including Prostate cancer.