National Prostate Cancer Coalition Launches Clinical Trial Education Program-Get in the G.A.M.E (Get All Men Educated about Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials) Addresses Low Awareness of Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials

PR Newswire

01-29-07

WASHINGTON, Jan 29, 2007 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- The National Prostate Cancer Coalition (NPCC), today announced the launch of "Get in the G.A.M.E. -- Get All Men Educated about Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials" to help men with prostate cancer understand that clinical trials may be an important option to consider. Talking with a doctor about clinical trials is particularly important for men with recurrent disease who are at risk for or already suffering from bone metastases (spread of cancer to the bone). Clinical trials advance science in the areas of disease they study and in some cases provide access to potential new therapies.

"We're conducting our "Get in the G.A.M.E. - Get All Men Educated" initiative because a recent survey of prostate cancer patients shows that only a very small percentage of patients -- about 12 percent of men with prostate cancer -- know that clinical trials are an option," said NPCC CEO Richard N. Atkins, M.D. "Clinical trials examine the safety and benefit of experimental drugs to find new treatments for prostate cancer aimed at extending and improving quality of life and ultimately a cure. It's important for men to ask their urologist or oncologist about trials that may be helpful."

Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in America among men with more than 218,000 new cases expected to be diagnosed in 2007. Approximately one man in six men is diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime and all men with prostate cancer are at risk to develop bone metastases.

"Being informed of clinical trials is particularly important for men with recurring prostate cancer for whom fewer approved therapies exist," said Atkins. "In fact, certain cancers are more likely to spread to the bone than others and prostate cancer is one of them."

The survey, "Cancer Clinical Trials Awareness and Attitudes in Cancer Survivors," conducted by the Coalition of Cancer Cooperative Groups and Northwestern University polled nearly 2,000 U.S. cancer survivors, and found that as few as one in 10 cancer survivors report ever being made aware of trial opportunities during treatment. For those patients who reported participating in clinical trials, the survey found that 92 percent of participants had a positive experience with their clinical trial.

"This survey tells us that we need to do a better job of informing men about clinical trials that may make a difference in how their disease is managed in helping determine the potential benefit of new agents," said Matthew Smith, M.D., PhD assistant physician, division of hematology/oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Mass. "We are currently conducting clinical trials to evaluate the potential for an investigational therapy to prevent and treat the bone metastases in men with prostate cancer."

"Education about, and when appropriate, participation in, clinical trials is so important -- that's why we are encouraging dialogue between men with prostate cancer, their families and their physicians," noted Atkins.

To learn more about prostate cancer or bone metastases go to National Prostate Cancer Coalition: Prostate cancer awareness, outreach and advocacy.. For information about relevant clinical trials, go to www.rising-psa.com or call 1-800-536-8604 (hosted by Amgen, Inc.). Patients accessing this Web site and toll free number will be provided with information about Amgen and other available prostate cancer clinical trials.

About Bone Metastases

Bone metastases are cancer cells that separate from tumors, enter the bloodstream, and migrate to bone tissue where they settle and grow. The tumor cells and bone cells interact, which may lead to the disruption of normal bone metabolism and cause an increase in osteoclast (cells responsible for bone resorption) activity. This interaction may stimulate tumor growth and bone destruction.

Bone metastases are one of the most frequent causes of pain in people with cancer and may lead to severe skeletal complications, such as fractures, spinal cord compression resulting in paralysis, need for surgery to bone, and need for radiation to bone for pain palliation.

Approximately 452,000 people in the United States suffer from cancer with metastases to the bone. Certain cancers, like prostate cancer, are more likely to spread to the bone than others.

About the National Prostate Cancer Coalition and Get in the G.A.M.E. Initiative

Celebrating 10 years of saving lives, the National Prostate Cancer Coalition sets the standard in rapidly reducing the burden of prostate cancer on men and their families through awareness, outreach and advocacy.

The Get in the G.A.M.E. Program has been made possible by financial support from Amgen, Inc.

SOURCE National Prostate Cancer Coalition

CONTACT: Cindy Oertel, for National Prostate Cancer Coalition, +1-212-601-8274

URL: National Prostate Cancer Coalition: Prostate cancer awareness, outreach and advocacy.

http://www.rising-psa.com