Stopping prostate cancer that has come back
After men are treated for localised prostate cancer, there is still a chance the cancer can come back. If this happens, treatments like surgery and radiotherapy can be used to contain the cancer, but these aren’t always effective.
Professor Callan and his team have found a new combination of treatments, and a unique way to deliver them, they believe can help control prostate cancer that has come back after initial treatments.
Bursting the bubble on prostate cancer
Part of Professor Callan’s new treatment involves the use of chemotherapy drugs. The drugs s are effective at killing the prostate cancer, but can have harmful side effects. To get around this, he’s developed a way to package up the drugs in microscopic packets – called microbubbles. The microbubbles are designed to burst when they come into contact with ultrasound waves, similar to those used to image babies in the womb. So by combining his chemotherapy ‘bubbles’ with the ultrasound treatment, a toxic dose can be delivered just to the cancer, without causing side effects in the rest of the body.
Building evidence to test the treatment in men
In this project, Professor Callan and his team will continue to develop their microbubble drug delivery system, and test it in models of prostate cancer. They’ll look to see how effective the treatment is at killing the prostate cancer, and whether it’s better than existing treatments for prostate cancer that has come back. They’ll also investigate the safety of the treatment. This work will help them build a case to test their new treatment in men with prostate cancer.