Docetaxel in hormone-refractory metastatic prostate cancer

Drugs. 2005;65(16):2287-94; discussion 2295-7. doi: 10.2165/00003495-200565160-00003.


The taxoid analogue docetaxel is a potent inhibitor of microtubular depolymerisation and, in hormone-refractory metastatic prostate cancer, it also counters the effects of the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2. Overall survival was significantly increased in patients with hormone-refractory metastatic prostate cancer receiving intravenous docetaxel every 3 weeks plus oral prednisone or estramustine, compared with patients receiving intravenous mitoxantrone every 3 weeks plus prednisone in two large phase III trials (TAX 327 and SWOG [Southwest Oncology Group] 9916). In the TAX 327 study, patients receiving docetaxel 75 mg/m(2) every 3 weeks plus prednisone had a median overall survival duration of 18.9 months; in the SWOG 9916 study, median overall survival duration was 17.5 months with docetaxel 60 mg/m(2) every 3 weeks plus estramustine 280 mg three times daily on days 1-5. The median overall survival duration for the control arm of mitoxantrone 12 mg/m(2) every 3 weeks plus prednisone was 16-17 months. Compared with mitoxantrone plus prednisone, docetaxel plus prednisone improved prostate specific antigen response rate, pain and health-related quality of life, and docetaxel plus estramustine increased progression-free survival. Adverse events were more common with docetaxel- than mitoxantrone-based treatment regimens, but most events associated with docetaxel were mild-to-moderate in severity.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Docetaxel
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Neoplasms, Hormone-Dependent / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms, Hormone-Dependent / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Taxoids / adverse effects
  • Taxoids / pharmacology
  • Taxoids / therapeutic use*


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Taxoids
  • Docetaxel