Survival outcomes from atezolizumab plus bevacizumab versus Lenvatinib in Child Pugh B unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma patients

J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2023 Aug;149(10):7565-7577. doi: 10.1007/s00432-023-04678-2. Epub 2023 Mar 28.


Introduction: The best first-line treatment for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and Child-Pugh (CP) class B remains unknown. The aim of the present study was to perform a real-world analysis on a large sample of patients with unresectable HCC with CP B treated with atezolizumab plus bevacizumab Vs Lenvatinib.

Methods: The study population included patients affected by advanced (BCLC-C) or intermediate (BCLC-B) HCC patients not suitable for locoregional therapies from both the Western and Eastern world (Italy, Germany, Republic of Korea and Japan), who received atezolizumab plus bevacizumab or Lenvatinib as first-line treatment. All the study population presented a CP class of B. The primary endpoint of the study was the overall survival (OS) of CP B patients treated with Lenvatinib compared to atezolizumab plus bevacizumab. Survival curves were estimated using the product-limit method of Kaplan-Meier. The role of stratification factors was analyzed with log-rank tests. Finally, an interaction test was performed for the main baseline clinical characteristics.

Results: 217 CP B HCC patients were enrolled in the study: 65 (30%) received atezolizumab plus bevacizumab, and 152 (70%) received lenvatinib. The mOS for patients receiving Lenvatinib was 13.8 months (95% CI: 11.6-16.0), compared to 8.2 months (95% CI 6.3-10.2) for patients receiving atezolizumab plus bevacizumab as first-line treatment (atezolizumab plus bevacizumab Vs Lenvatinib: HR 1.9, 95% CI 1.2-3.0, p = 0.0050). No statistically significant differences were highlighted in terms of mPFS. The multivariate analysis confirmed that patients receiving Lenvatinib as first-line treatment have a significantly longer OS compared to patients receiving atezolizumab plus bevacizumab (HR 2.01; 95% CI 1.29-3.25, p = 0.0023). By evaluating the cohort of patients who received atezolizumab plus bevacizumab, we found that Child B patients with ECOG PS 0, or BCLC B stage or ALBI grade 1 were those who had benefited from the treatment thus showing survival outcomes no significantly different compared to those receiving Lenvatinib.

Conclusion: The present study suggests for the first time a major benefit from Lenvatinib compared to atezolizumab plus bevacizumab in a large cohort of patients with CP B class HCC.

Keywords: Advanced HCC; Atezolizumab; Bevacizumab; Real Word.

MeSH terms

  • Bevacizumab
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms* / drug therapy


  • atezolizumab
  • Bevacizumab
  • lenvatinib