Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the UK with over 47,000 men diagnosed with the disease every year. In the early stages of the disease the cancer may be slow growing allowing the patient to be put on “active surveillance”; monitoring the prostate cancer rather than treating it straight away, avoiding unnecessary treatment and the possible unpleasant side effects.
One form of treatment for prostate cancer is hormone therapy. Hormone therapy can be used in the early stages of the disease alongside other treatments but is most commonly used for advanced (metastatic) prostate cancer. Advanced prostate cancer is cancer that has spread from the prostate to other parts of the body, most commonly to the bones and lymph nodes. Unfortunately, although patients initially respond well to hormone therapy it is likely that at some point their disease will progress as a result of the cancer no longer responding to hormone treatment. This cancer is often called ‘castration resistant’ prostate cancer.
Sadly, almost three-quarters of men diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer die within five years, so our cancer research team are working to develop new treatments to help such men live significantly longer.
Dr Mohammad Asim, Head of Oncology and Lecturer in Molecular Cancer Biology at the University of Surrey, was awarded prestigious 2018 Young Investigator Award and Prostate Cancer Foundation Grant to develop new hormone blocking treatment to prevent development of Castration Resistant Prostate Cancer or effectively treat it
Dr Asim is one of only four cancer specialists in Europe and one of 29 worldwide to receive this prestigious award. The prize is presented annually to early career scientists with ground breaking ideas in tackling prostate cancer.
As a recipient of this award, Dr Asim will receive $225,000 grant over three years to develop a novel drug to treat aggressive prostate cancer, which has no long-term cure and is fatal in the majority of cases.
Dr Asim is a renowned expert in prostate cancer and has held a number of high-profile academic positions including as a senior scientist at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute at the University of Cambridge, and he has also previously worked at the Cancer Cell Biology Center at the University of Wisconsin in the US.
Dr Asim said: “I am delighted to have received this award. Prostate cancer is a devastating illness, with many complications that are difficult to treat. This award will facilitate further investigation into aggressive prostate cancer, an area currently lacking in research, potentially helping to save men’s lives.”
Almost three-quarters of men diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer die within five years, and the hope is if it works, this treatment will help such men live significantly longer.