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Family members and carers play an important role in supporting patients during an episode of ill health. We are committed to the active involvement of family members, friends and carers during a hospital stay. Family members and carers play an important role in supporting patients during an episode of ill health.
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Date: 11 February 2022
A decade-long clinical trial to improve survival rates for men with prostate cancer in Portsmouth has reached an ‘impressive’ recruitment milestone.
The oncology and urology research team at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust have recruited 300 patients with prostate cancer for the STAMPEDE trial since 2010.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. In the UK, there are 47,000 new cases each year with around 11,000 deaths.
The STAMPEDE trial, which is the largest prostate cancer treatment trial in the UK, has looked at how a range of drugs and treatments might improve life expectancy. Results from the trials have changed practices and treatments.
John Finnis from the Isle of Wight has been taking part in the trial for three years and is one of 10,000 men across the country, who thanks to their participation, have helped researchers substantially improve survival rates for those with advanced prostate cancer.
The 72-year-old said: “When I was diagnosed in 2019, the research nurse told me about the trial, and I joined the arm that meant I was taking metformin tablets daily. My prostate-specific antigen levels have stayed the same, so it seems to be working which is great news.
“Without people taking part in research trials, medicine would never move forward which is unfair to people in the future. All trials are different, and it is important to chat to the team about it but for the STAMPEDE trial this was about making a treatment work better for me, so it was a good opportunity.”
The research team has been recruiting between 20 to 40 participants each year to the STAMPEDE trial (Systematic Therapy in Advancing or Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Evaluation of Drug Efficacy).
Professor Nick James from the Institute of Cancer Research, who is leading the trial nationally, said: “Many congratulations to Dr Gale and her team at Portsmouth on reaching this very impressive recruitment milestone.
“STAMPEDE has been at the forefront of advances in prostate cancer for many years. Its success is entirely dependent on the broad support the trial has received from busy clinical teams like that in Portsmouth.
“As chief investigator, I am very aware how much pressure frontline clinicians have on their time – it’s not easy to hit this sort of recruitment figure.”
Executive director of research at PHU, Anoop Chauhan said: “Reaching 300 recruits as part of this national trial is a fantastic achievement and is testament to the team’s dedicated hard work for the last decade to improving patient care and experience.”
Dr Joanna Gale, an oncology consultant, is principal investigator for the trial at PHU and has co-authored 15 STAMPEDE publications.
Dr Gale said: “My team and I are extremely proud to be involved in delivering research trials such as STAMPEDE and to know that we are contributing to developing new treatments and improving patient care.
“The specific advances made in management of advanced prostate cancer over the last ten years have been possible thanks to the many patients who have agreed to participate in research trials. I would like to thank all those who have chosen to be involved in the STAMPEDE trial in Portsmouth.
“I am extremely fortunate to work with a very committed team of research staff and other clinicians and this recruitment milestone is a fantastic achievement for everyone.”
Specialist research nurse Mila Roca added: “The whole team are so proud of what we have achieved, and it really sums up why working in research is so rewarding.”
Want to get involved in research at PHU and help contribute to improving treatments? Sign up on our website to get information on the latest trials and studies.