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Health Technol Assess. 2010 Oct;14(Suppl. 2):47-53. doi: 10.3310/hta14suppl2/07.

Bevacizumab in combination with fluoropyrimidine-based chemotherapy for the first-line treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer.

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  • 1ScHARR Technology Assessment Group, The University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK. sophie.whyte@shef.ac.uk

Abstract

This paper presents a summary of the evidence review group (ERG) report into the clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of bevacizumab in combination with fluoropyrimidine-based chemotherapy for the first-line treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer based on the manufacturer's submission to the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) as part of the single technology appraisal (STA) process. Evidence was available in the form of one phase III, multicentre, multinational, randomised, open-label study (NO16966 trial). This two-arm study was originally designed to demonstrate the non-inferiority of oral capecitabine plus oxaliplatin (XELOX) compared with 5-fluorouracil plus folinic acid plus oxaliplatin (FOLFOX)-4 in adult patients with histologically confirmed metastatic colorectal cancer who had not previously been treated. Following randomisation of 634 patients, the open-label study was amended to include a 2 × 2 factorial randomised (partially blinded for bevacizumab) phase III trial with the coprimary objective of demonstrating superiority of bevacizumab in combination with chemotherapy compared with chemotherapy alone. Measured outcomes included overall survival, progression-free survival, response rate, adverse effects of treatment and health-related quality of life. The manufacturer's primary pooled analysis of superiority (using the intention-to-treat population) showed that after a median follow-up of 28 months, the addition of bevacizumab to chemotherapy significantly improved progression-free survival and overall survival compared with chemotherapy alone in adult patients with histologically confirmed metastatic colorectal cancer who were not previously treated [median progression-free survival 9.4 vs 7.7 months (absolute difference 1.7 months); hazard ratio (HR) 0.79, 97.5% confidence interval (CI) 0.72 to 0.87; p = 0.0001; median overall survival 21.2 vs 18.9 months (absolute difference 2.3 months); HR 0.83, 97.5% CI 0.74 to 0.93; p = 0.0019]. The NO16966 trial was of reasonable methodological quality and demonstrated a significant improvement in both progression-free survival and overall survival when bevacizumab was added to XELOX or FOLFOX. However, the size of the actual treatment effect of bevacizumab is uncertain. The ERG believed that the modelling structure employed was appropriate, but highlighted several key issues and areas of uncertainty. At the time of writing, NICE was yet to issue the guidance for this appraisal.

PMID:
21047491
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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