The Prostate Cancer Charity comments on a new drug which can help to extend the lives of men with prostate cancer

The Prostate Cancer Charity comments on new research published in the New England Journal of Medicine, which has found that the drug abiraterone can help to extend, by an average of four months, the lives of men with advanced prostate cancer who have stopped responding to other hormone treatments and chemotherapy.

Owen Sharp, The Prostate Cancer Charity's Chief Executive, explains: "Abiraterone is one of the most significant moves forward for some time in the treatment of men with advanced disease that is no longer responding to existing treatments. Critically, as these results show, the drug can extend the lives of men living with this type of cancer - for whom very few treatment options remain - by an average of four months

"It is vital that this drug is licenced and approved swiftly so it can be made available to men in the UK living with this stage of disease, who simply cannot afford to wait.

"We call urgently on NICE and the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) to ensure that they are able to appraise this new drug as soon as possible, to ensure that guidance on its use in the NHS is available across the UK, and - more importantly - that the men who could benefit from this treatment gain access to it as quickly as possible," he added.