Purpose: Bevacizumab provides a survival benefit in first- and second-line metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). In a large, observational, bevacizumab treatment study (Bevacizumab Regimens: Investigation of Treatment Effects and Safety [BRiTE]) in patients who had mCRC, a longer-than-expected overall survival (OS) of 25.1 months was reported. The association between various pre- and post-treatment factors (including the use of bevacizumab beyond first progression [BBP]) and survival was examined.
Patients and methods: The 1,445 of 1,953 previously untreated patients with mCRC who were enrolled in BRiTE and who experienced disease progression (PD) were classified into three groups: no post-PD treatment (n = 253), post-PD treatment without bevacizumab (no BBP; n = 531), and BBP (n = 642). Relevant baseline and on-study variables, including BBP, were analyzed with a Cox model with respect to their independent effect on survival beyond first PD.
Results: Median OS was 25.1 months (95% CI, 23.4 to 27.5 months), and median progression-free survival was 10.0 months in the overall BRiTE population. Baseline and postbaseline factors were well balanced between the BBP and no-BBP groups. Median OS rates were 12.6, 19.9, and 31.8 months in the no post-PD treatment, no-BBP, and BBP groups, respectively. In multivariate analyses, compared with no BBP, BBP was strongly and independently associated with improved survival (HR, 0.48; P < .001). Hypertension that required medication was the only bevacizumab-related safety event that occurred more frequently in the BBP group (24.6% v 19.2%).
Conclusion: These results from a large, prospective, observational study suggest that continued vascular endothelial growth factor inhibition with bevacizumab beyond initial PD could play an important role improving the overall success of therapy for patients who have mCRC.