A trial looking at atrasentan for prostate cancer that has stopped responding to treatment and has not spread to another part of the body

Cancer type:

Prostate cancer




Phase 3

This trial compared a new drug called atrasentan with a dummy drug (placebo) for men with prostate cancer that is no longer responding to hormone therapy.

Doctors often treat prostate cancer with hormone therapy. But sometimes this treatment can stop working and the cancer can continue to grow. This is called hormone refractory refractory prostate cancer. Doctors are always looking for new ways to improve treatment.

The aim of this trial was to see if a new drug called atrasentan could help to slow or stop prostate cancer growth. And to find out more about side effects.

Summary of results

The researchers found that atrasentan did not help to stop prostate cancer growing for the men in this trial. But many of the men stopped taking atrastentan earlier than they should have due to side effects. So that made it difficult for the research team to be sure how well it worked.

The trial recruited 941 men with prostate cancer

  • Half had atrasentan
  • Half had a dummy drug (a placebo) Open a glossary item

The researchers analysed the results in 2007. They found the cancer had spread to another part of the body in 267 men who had the dummy drug and 227 men who had atrasentan. But this difference was no bigger than could have happened by chance (in other words, it was not ‘statistically significant Open a glossary item’).

The side effects reported by the men who had atrasentan included swollen arms and legs, a blocked nose, headaches, shortness of breath, a drop in red blood cells (anaemia) and heart problems. But most of the side effects were mild.

We have based this summary on information from the team who ran the trial. The information they sent us has been reviewed by independent specialists (peer reviewed Open a glossary item) but may not have been published in a medical journal. The figures we quote above were provided by the trial team. We have not analysed the data ourselves.

Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr David Dearnaley

Supported by

Abbott Laboratories

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:

Oracle - 119

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Keith took part in a trial looking into hormone therapy

A picture of Keith

"Health wise I am feeling great. I am a big supporter of trials - it allows new treatments and drugs to be brought in.”

Last reviewed:

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