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What Is a Prostate Cancer Vaccine?

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Published on February 25, 2019

How does a vaccine work to treat prostate cancer? Patient Power founder Andrew Schorr is joined by noted prostate cancer expert Dr. Maha Hussain, from the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, to share insight on research for targeted vaccine therapies. Dr. Hussain explains what vaccines are available for prostate cancer and how it works to fight cancer. Tune in to find out more.

This is a Patient Empowerment Network program produced by Patient Power in partnership with Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. We thank Astellas, Clovis Oncology and Pfizer for their support. These organizations have no editorial control. Patient Power is solely responsible for program content.

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Transcript | What Is a Prostate Cancer Vaccine?

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That's how you’ll get care that's most appropriate for you.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.

Andrew Schorr:                     

Dr. Hussain, a few years ago, time passes, there was a vaccine developed for prostate cancer. When we think of flu shots and other vaccines our kids get, things like that, this is different, and where does it come in?

Dr. Hussain:                

Well, the vaccine is an agent called sipuleucel-T, or Provenge, and this was actually the first vaccine approved in prostate cancer, There aren't many vaccines, by the way, historically, for treatments of cancers in general, and where this comes in, essentially, the intent was to, in fact, personalize the care of the patient by arming the body with this particular vaccine to fight the cancer itself. 

 It’s an approach available commercially at this moment, and certainly, patients should consult with their physicians regarding the appropriateness of it, and partly because some aspects of this particular vaccine as such where you the acuteness of the situation may determine which agents you want to pick up, whether it's going to be a vaccine versus a chemo, versus a hormonal agent, so this is where I would say personalizing the care to that individual becomes very critical. 

Certainly, if it's appropriate, that's available, FDA-approved, and patients could explore it. There's a lot of work looking at, essentiallyI don't know if this is premature to address, but the adoptive cell therapy and other things to try to arm the body with the tools necessary to fight cancer.

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you.