Bevacizumab for the treatment of high-grade glioma

Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2012 Aug;12(8):1101-11. doi: 10.1517/14712598.2012.694422. Epub 2012 Jun 5.


Introduction: Gliomas are highly vascular and rich in vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) that promotes angiogenesis. Bevacizumab is a monoclonal antibody against VEGF inhibiting angiogenesis by preventing receptor activation. Phase II clinical trials using bevacizumab in both newly diagnosed and recurrent high-grade glioma (HGG) showed promising results.

Areas covered: This is a review of clinical trials investigating bevacizumab in newly diagnosed and recurrent HGGs with a focus on outcome results. A future perspective about the expected role of bevacizumab is given. Bevacizumab efficacy, safety and tolerability, the combination of radiation and bevacizumab as well as the use of bevacizumab to treat pseudoprogression are discussed. Further criteria of response evaluation needed to be adjusted in the age of anti-angiogenic therapy and this will be discussed.

Expert opinion: Bevacizumab has been shown to be safe and tolerable in HGG. In the recurrent disease setting, bevacizumab alone might be sufficient for a clinical benefit and is currently approved as a single agent for this indication. While clinical trials demonstrate a prolonged progression-free survival in bevacizumab-treated HGG, a benefit on OS has not been demonstrated yet. Bevacizumab has also been introduced into other settings in neuro-oncology including concurrent administration with re-irradiation for recurrent HGG.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / adverse effects
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / therapeutic use*
  • Bevacizumab
  • Brain Neoplasms / blood supply
  • Brain Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Brain Neoplasms / mortality
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology
  • Cranial Irradiation
  • Disease Progression
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Glioma / blood supply
  • Glioma / drug therapy*
  • Glioma / mortality
  • Glioma / pathology
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Grading
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Radiotherapy, Adjuvant
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Bevacizumab