Cuba begins 3rd phase of clinical trials of treatment for prostate cancer

Cuban scientists are drafting the protocols for the third phase of clinical trials of a potential treatment for advanced prostate cancer, state media reported.

The therapy, named Heberprovac, was developed at the Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Center, or CIGB, in the east-central province of Camaguey.

After the second phase of the trial was completed in early 2015, Heberprovac was approved for “safety and efficacy” by Cuba’s State Bureau of Medications, Medical Equipment and Devices.

The next step in the clinical trial is to compare the efficacy of the new Cuban drug with Zoladex, an internationally known therapy for several types of cancer, one of the Heberprovac researchers told the official AIN news agency.

The hope is that the Cuban compound will be able to compete with Zoladex in resistance to hormonal castration, either delaying its appearance or reverting it, the report said.

Prostate adenocarcinoma is a tumor feeding on testosterone, and both therapies inhibit the production of the male hormone, thus reducing the afflictions associated with this type of cancer.

Heberprovac’s administration schedule, which includes seven injections – the first four every 14 days and the rest once a month – is better than Zoladex’s schedule, CIGB scientists said.

Zoladex, which is also used to treat breast cancer, is administered every three months via subcutaneous implant.

Although Heberprovac cannot be described yet as a cure for prostate cancer, most of the patients treated “show longer survival rates and a better quality of life,” the Cuban researchers said. EFE

Fox News Latino, August 19, 2015

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