John White was diagnosed with stage four Prostate Cancer and at one point, doctors told him he had just months to live. Then doctors used cutting-edge biotechnology to match White with the therapy that saved his life.
For John White, this is the perfect way to spend an evening.
John C. White III said, “My wife and I like to go out in it on a hot night and cruise around in it.”
Classic cars like his 1923 Ford T-bucket roadster are a passion. Just four years ago John wasn’t sure he and Joanne would have too many more nights like this left. John’s doctors diagnosed him with aggressive prostate cancer that had spread.
“I started a year and a half of chemotherapy, four different drugs, with the hope that would eradicate it,” said White.
Nothing doctors tried stopped the cancer.
Paul Mathew, MD, Genitourinary Oncologist Tufts Medical Center, Boston said, “His life was in danger. I would have estimated a life expectancy of under a year if not six months.”
That’s when doctor Mathew tried something cutting-edge for prostate cancer, he removed john’s tumor and sent it to a Boston Biotech Lab. Technicians analyzed the genes known to drive tumor growth.
“In john’s case he had very rare mutation found in zero point one percent of all prostate cancers,” said Doctor Mathew.
The lab was also able to match john’s profile with treatment options and one was the immunotherapy drug keytruda, FDA approved for melanoma and bladder and lung cancer but so far, not prostate. John had infusions for three years, and it worked!
“His scans are pristine. His PSA is undetectable,” said Doctor Mathew.
“He had a hunch that I might respond to this, and he was absolutely right. I’m just thankful for every single day I have,” said White.
Despite John’s treatment success, Doctor Mathew cautions patients that genomic profiling is not a magic bullet for everyone. Sometimes there will be no existing therapies that will be a match.