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Future Oncol. 2006 Dec;2(6):677-96.

Abarelix for injectable suspension: first-in-class gonadotropin-releasing hormone antagonist for prostate cancer.

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University of Nimejian, The Netherlands.


Abarelix, a gonadotropin-releasing hormone antagonist, with its indication for advanced symptomatic prostate cancer, represents the newest category of hormonal therapy introduced in the past 15 years. Results from Phase II and III clinical trials demonstrate the advantages of abarelix over commonly used luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) agonist therapy: abarelix does not cause a surge in serum testosterone that can precipitate a flare phenomenon or worsening of disease, particularly dangerous for patients with metastatic, symptomatic disease, and produces medical castration more quickly. Abarelix was also demonstrated to promptly and substantially reduce follicle-stimulating hormone levels to lower than LHRH agonist. Study results demonstrate effective anticancer responses during extended exposure to abarelix: improvements in pain score and/or analgesic use, improvements in urinary symptoms (including urinary catheter removal) and complete avoidance of bilateral orchiectomy for patients undergoing at least 12 weeks of treatment. In Phase III clinical trials, abarelix demonstrated a similar overall safety profile when compared with LHRH agonist monotherapy, and a superior safety profile when compared with LHRH agonist plus antiandrogen combination therapy. Abarelix patients experienced a greater incidence of immediate-onset systemic allergic reactions as compared with control arms.

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