Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute Chosen As Prostate Cancer Trial Site

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The Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute has received funding to participate in a Johns Hopkins Led Prostate Cancer Study. Participating researchers at the Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute will begin enrolling patients into this Phase II clinical trial in Fall 2015. Samuel R. Denmeade, MD, Professor of Oncology, Johns Hopkins University Medical Center, leads the trial.

Check presentation by The One-In-Six Foundation to Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute

Ms. Laura Hunsicker, President of The One-in-Six Foundation delivered a $50,000 check to sponsor the cost of the collaborative Clinical Trial with Dr. Samuel Denmeade of Johns Hopkins.

"This research will help advance the body of knowledge that may one day help lead to more effective therapies,” said Andrew Fenton, MD, Executive Medical Director of the Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute.

The Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute will begin enrolling patients into a Phase II clinical trial to determine if treatment with dexamethasone followed by enzalutamide provides palliative benefit and objective response, in patients who have previously had disease progression after enzalutamide and docetaxel therapy.

Treatment options are very limited for patients with metastatic prostate cancer whose disease has become resistant to hormonal therapy and chemotherapy. Initially, the disease responds to drugs such as enzalutamide, which block the androgen receptor. However, prostate cancer becomes resistant to this therapy through several mechanisms, including changes in the cancer’s expression of the androgen receptor. Dexamethasone and other glucocorticoids are an established treatment for prostate cancer; they can provide pain control, relief of other cancer-related symptoms like anorexia and fatigue, as well as have a direct anti-cancer effect.

Samuel R. Denmeade, MD, Professor of Oncology, Johns Hopkins University Medical Center, is leading the trial. “The hypothesis underlying this clinical trial is that treatment with dexamethasone can induce palliative and disease response in men with advanced prostate cancer,” Dr. Denmeade said.

The trial is funded by The One-in-Six Foundation. The One-in-Six Foundation supports early research into new ideas that might transform prostate cancer treatment. The One-in-Six support is hitting the mark on promising new approaches -- including a new vaccine and an exciting albeit counter-intuitive clinical trial using testosterone in the treatment of prostate cancer. In addition, The One-in-Six Foundation promotes early detection of prostate cancer through awareness and access to free PSA testing in the Akron, Ohio area, where the foundation is based.

Ms. Laura Hunsicker, President of The One-in-Six Foundation visited Akron General’s McDowell Cancer Institute to provide initial funding and offer her support for the start of this trial. “The One-in-Six Foundation exists with the mission of advancing risk awareness in the fight against prostate cancer, and through the early-stage funding of research that otherwise might not move forward,” said Ms. Hunsicker. Ms. Hunsicker’s late husband, Bruce, started the Foundation after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Bruce lost his battle against the disease at the age of 55.

“We are pleased to be a part of this important trial,” said Andrew Fenton, MD, Executive Medical Director of the Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute. “Treatment options for men with advanced metastatic disease are few. This research will help advance the body of knowledge that may one day help lead to more effective therapies,” Dr. Fenton said.

Participating researchers at the Akron General McDowell Cancer Institute will begin enrolling patients for this trial in Fall 2015.

Akron General's McDowell Cancer Institute provides patients with swift access to the newest therapies, diagnostics and surgical techniques to help minimize side effects and improve outcomes. A research site with national clinical trials, the Institute offers treatment options that may help extend and improve lives. The McDowell Cancer Institute is a main member the National Cancer Institute NRG Oncology Group. The Institute also participates in clinical trials through the Cancer Trials Support Unit as well as participates in pharmaceutical and in-house investigator-initiated studies.

For more information about options available through our cancer center clinical trials, please contact the McDowell Cancer Institute Research Department at 330-344-6348.

About Akron General Health System
Akron General Health System, an affiliate of Cleveland Clinic, is a not-for-profit health care organization that has been improving the health and lives of the people and communities it serves since 1914. Akron General Health System includes: Akron General Medical Center, a 532-bed teaching and research medical center, and Edwin Shaw Rehabilitation, the area’s largest provider of rehabilitation services; Akron General Partners, which includes Partners Physician Group, the Akron General Health & Wellness Centers, Lodi Community Hospital, Community Health Centers and other companies; Akron General Visiting Nurse Service and Affiliates; and Akron General Foundation. Recently, U.S. News & World Report ranked Akron General Medical Center as the seventh best hospital in Ohio. In 2013, the American Nurses Association bestowed the prestigious “Magnet” status on the more that 1,000 nurses from Akron General Medical Center, Edwin Shaw Rehabilitation and the Health System’s Health & Wellness Centers. For more information about Akron General Health System, visit akrongeneral.org.

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Kelly Ward-Smith
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