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Prostate Cancer screening is vitally important for Jordan’s male population over 50

08th November 2016 in Product Launches

  • More than 8% of the Jordanian male population are within the risk age group for prostate cancer[1]
  • Early detection may increase overall survival rate
  • Currently men in Jordan are 5.3 times more likely to die from prostate cancer as compared with the USA[2]
  • Astellas Pharma launched its prostate cancer treatment Xtandi™ providing effective disease treatment

Amman, Jordan; November 8, 2016: Cancer is a growing concern in Jordan and currently ranks as the second leading cause of death in the country.[3]  According to GLOBOCAN research, men in Jordan are approximately 5.3 times more likely to die from prostate cancer as compared with the USA.2 The reported incidence rate (patients diagnosed with prostate cancer) in the country is six times lower compared to the USA, though the mortality ratio is about the same2. More than 8% of Jordanian male population are over the age of fifty, placing them in the risk group for prostate cancer.1

Dr. Abdul Naser M. Al Shunaigat, Consultant Urologist and the President of the Jordanian Association of Urological Surgeons, stated:

“Prostate cancer is not discussed in the region often enough. Due to the lack of knowledge and awareness of the disease, men in this region are diagnosed in the late stage of the disease.  The ongoing frustration is that this disease has a high potential for a complete cure if it is diagnosed early.”

Prostate cancer is a slow-growing tumor, and some of the early symptoms are linked to other diseases that are experienced by men in their 50’s or above. If symptoms such as difficult and/or frequent urination, blood in the urine or semen, or erectile dysfunction,[4]  are experienced it is advised to visit the doctor immediately.

 Dr. Sana Al Sukhun, President of Jordan Oncology Society, commented:

There are treatments that can be administered at every stage of prostate cancer. Hormonal therapies enable physicians to manage the disease according to patients’ conditions offering effective results, with an established side effect profile. Hormonal therapy with Enzalutamide blocks the androgen receptor pathways at three distinct stages disrupting the cascade of events that fuel the growth of prostate cancer.[5]

Astellas Pharma launched its prostate cancer therapy – Xtandi™  – to the Jordanian market. It is a prescription drug used to treat male patients diagnosed with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). Enzalutamide, the active ingredient, targets the signaling pathway of androgen receptors at three distinct stages, which inhibit the growth of cancerous cells.[6] Efficacy data shows that treatment with Enzalutamide decreases patients’ risk of death by 23% and the risk of disease progression is reduced by 68% [7]. The disease burden is limited by delaying the initiation of chemotherapy ( approximately 28 months).6 Enzalutamide was generally well tolerated in chemotherapy-naïve patients with mCRPC, most common side effects include fatigue, hot flush and hypertension.6

 “At Astellas Pharma, we continually strive to deliver therapies that improve patients’ quality of life. We are proud to be able to offer treatment with Enzalutamide to Jordanian patients and physicians and look forward to launching new therapies as they become available,” Mr. Fadi Qiqieh, Country Manager, Astellas Jordan , commented on the launch of the new product.

About Astellas Pharma Inc.:

Astellas is a global pharmaceutical company dedicated to Changing Tomorrow™ by improving people’s health through developing reliable first-in-line and best-in-class therapy options in our specialization areas – Oncology, Urology, Transplantation, Anti-Infectives and Pain management.  Aiming to improve the lives of cancer patients, we are focusing our R&D and partnership efforts into precision medicine – there are 36 therapies under clinical development targeting prostate cancer and other solid tumors like breast cancer, lung cancer, and bladder cancer, as well as hematological malignancies.

 About Astellas MENA/SSA:

Astellas MENA/SSA is an affiliate of Astellas Pharma Inc. and aims to make a positive difference to the patients in the Middle East & Africa region, which is a key territory for Astellas. The new regional affiliate in Dubai, United Arab Emirates brings together a team of highly skilled people, with local knowledge and long-standing professional experience in the region. The regional affiliate serves as a management hub to further expand and develop Astellas’ business activities across the MENA/SSA territory.

About Enzalutamide:

XTANDI™  (Enzalutamide) is a prescription drug used for the treatment of male patients diagnosed with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).  Enzalutamide targets and blocks the signaling pathway of androgen receptors at three distinct stages, disrupting a cascade of events which fuel the growth of prostate cancer.[8],[9],[10]

About the Medivation/Astellas Collaboration:

In October 2009, Medivation (NASDAQ: MDVN) and Astellas (TSE: 4503) entered into a global agreement to jointly develop and commercialise enzalutamide. The companies are collaborating on a comprehensive development programme that includes studies to develop enzalutamide across the full spectrum of advanced prostate cancer as well as advanced breast cancer. The companies jointly commercialise enzalutamide in the United States and Astellas has responsibility for manufacturing and all additional regulatory filings globally, as well as commercialising enzalutamide outside the United States.


[1] Jordan Demographics Profile 2016. . Last accessed   October 2016

[2] Hilal L et al. Clin Genitourin Cancer 2015;13:505-11

[3] Local Statistics. King Hussein Cancer Foundation. Last accessed October 2016

[4] Prostate Cancer Symptoms. Prostate Cancer Foundation. . Last accessed October 2016

[5] European Medicines Agency, Xtandi (enzalutamide) Summary of Product Characteristics, 2014

[6] National Cancer Institute. Prostate Cancer Treatment. Last accessed October 2016

[7] Beer TM, et al.(2016). Enzalutamide in Men with Chemotherapy-naive Metastatic Castration-resistant Prostate Cancer: Extended Analysis of the Phase 3 PREVAIL Study. European Urology. Available at Last accessed October 2016

[8] European Medicines Agency, Xtandi (Enzalutamide) Summary of Product Characteristics, 2014

[9] European Commission, Community register of medical products for human use – Xtandi. Available from: . Last accessed October 2016

[10] Tran C, Ouk S, Clegg N et al. Development of a Second-Generation Antiandrogen for Treatment of Advanced Prostate Cancer. Science 2009;324(5928): 787–90

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