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NICE recommends prostate cancer treatment for UK patients

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has issued Final Draft Guidance (FDG) recommending AstraZeneca and MSD’s Lynparza (olaparib) for use as combination therapy with abiraterone and prednisone or prednisolone, as an option within its marketing authorisation, for untreated hormone-relapsed metastatic prostate cancer in adults who cannot have or do not want chemotherapy.1 

Olaparib is the first PARP inhibitor to demonstrate a clinically meaningful benefit when combined with abiraterone and prednisone or prednisolone to treat hormone-relapsed metastatic prostate cancer in adults who cannot have or do not want chemotherapy, regardless of biomarker status.1 Combination therapy showed a 34% reduction in the risk of disease progression or death in the PROpel Phase III trial.2

In the UK, more than 52,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year.3 Approximately 10-20% of prostate cancers are classified as castration-resistant (CRPC), evolving to resist the standard of care (SOC), androgen deprivation therapy (ADT).4 When CRPC is at an advanced or metastasised stage (mCRPC) it is typically hard to treat and has a poor prognosis.5,6 With half of patients with mCRPC only ever receiving one line of therapy, there is an urgent unmet need for new treatments and to optimise outcomes in the first-line treatment of mCRPC.7

 Professor Noel Clarke, Professor of Urological Oncology at The Christie, and Salford Royal Hospitals, said: “Data from the PROpel Phase III trial show that olaparib in combination with abiraterone and prednisone or prednisolone provides real benefit for men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. Typically, this type of prostate cancer is challenging to treat and often has a poor prognosis. Today’s recommendation by NICE, which enables this new combination therapy to be prescribed on the NHS, will provide a much needed effective therapy for men with this condition.”

Tom Keith-Roach, President, AstraZeneca UK, said: “We are truly delighted that olaparib, a treatment that represents the best of British science, is now available to even more UK patients. Critically, this is the first time that patients with this form of prostate cancer will be able to access a PARP inhibitor without the need for a specific biomarker test.”

David Long, Head of Oncology at MSD UK, said: “We are delighted that NICE has recognised the clinical and economic benefits of olaparib in combination with abiraterone and prednisone or prednisolone as a first-line, targeted treatment for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. This type of prostate cancer has unacceptable survival rates, and today’s NICE recommendation marks a vital step forward in changing the narrative for these patients.”


1 National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Final Draft Guidance. Olaparib with abiraterone for untreated hormone-relapsed metastatic prostate cancer. Issue date: 21 December 2023.
2 Clarke NW, et al. Abiraterone and Olaparib for Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. NEJM Evidence 2022;1(9).
3 About Prostate Cancer. Prostate Cancer UK. Available at: https://prostatecanceruk.org/prostate-information/about-prostate-cancer. Last accessed: December 2023.
4 Kirby M, et al. Characterising the castration-resistant prostate cancer population: a systematic review. International Journal of Clinical Practice. 2021;65(11):1180-1192.
5 Advanced Prostate Cancer. Urology Care Foundation. Available at: https://www.urologyhealth.org/urology-a-z/a_/advanced-prostate-cancer. Last accessed: December 2023
6 Posdzich P, et al. Metastatic Prostate Cancer—A Review of Current Treatment Options and Promising New Approaches. 2023 Jan;15(2):461.
7 George D, et al. Treatment Patterns and Outcomes in Patients With Metastatic Castration-resistant Prostate Cancer in a Real-world Clinical Practice Setting in the United States. 2020 Jan;18(4):284-294.

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Emma Cooper
Emma Cooper
Emma is Content Manager at Pf Media.


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