Bevacizumab

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Bevacizumab is an "anti-VEGF (i.e., vascular endothelial growth factor A) [1] monoclonal antibody consisting of humanized murine antibody with antigen-binding, complementary-determining regions from murine VEGF".[2] In the United States, it is marketed as Avastin by Genentech, a subsidiary of Roche Laboratories as an antineoplastic agent.

Indications

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes it as indicated for: glioblastoma multiforme, metastatic breast carcinoma, metastatic colorectal cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, and renal cell carcinoma. Common unlabeled uses are in anaplastic astrocytoma and ovarian carcinoma. [3]

Studies after release

A presentation at the June 2010 meeting of the American Society for Clinical Oncology stated it improved progression-free survival, but not overall survival, in advanced ovarian cancer. The study used higher dosages than other trials, and the most effective trial arm used an induction and a subsequent maintenance dose.[4]

It had received accelerated approval based on the surrogate marker that it decreased tumor size. On 16 July 2010, the FDA announced "FDA reviewers said two follow-up studies recently submitted by Roche failed to show that Avastin significantly extended lives compared to chemotherapy alone Additionally, the FDA said that in follow-up studies the drug did not slow tumor growth to the same degree as in earlier studies. Patients taking Avastin showed significantly more side effects, including high blood pressure, fatigue and abnormal white blood cell levels." [5]

References

  1. Vascular endothelial growth factor A isoform a [Homo sapiens], National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine
  2. Anonymous (2015), Bevacizumab [Substance Name] (English). Medical Subject Headings. U.S. National Library of Medicine.
  3. Avastin IV: doses, uses and warnings, Medscape/American Society of Health System Pharmacists
  4. Roxanne Nelson (7 June 2010), Bevacizumab Boosts Progression-Free Survival in Ovarian Cancer, Medscape (coverage of American Society for Clinical Oncology)
  5. Matthew Perone (17 July 2010), FDA says breast cancer drug did not extend lives, Associated Press in Washington Post