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Ann Oncol. 2012 Jul;23(7):1693-9. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdr571. Epub 2012 Jan 4.

FOLFIRI plus cetuximab versus FOLFIRI plus bevacizumab as first-line treatment for patients with metastatic colorectal cancer-subgroup analysis of patients with KRAS: mutated tumours in the randomised German AIO study KRK-0306.

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Department of Medicine III, University Hospital Grosshadern, University of Munich, Munich, Germany.



The AIO KRK-0306 trial compares the efficacy of infusional 5-fluorouracil, folinic acid, irinotecan (FOLFIRI) plus cetuximab with FOLFIRI plus bevacizumab in first-line treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). In October 2008, an amendment terminated the inclusion of patients with KRAS-mutated tumours. This subgroup of patients is evaluated in the present analysis, while the study is ongoing for patients with KRAS wild-type tumours.


Patients were randomly assigned to FOLFIRI (Tournigand regimen) every 2 weeks plus cetuximab (400 mg/m2 day 1, followed by 250 mg/m2 weekly=arm A) or bevacizumab (5 mg/kg every 2 weeks=arm B). Among 336 randomised patients, KRAS mutation was demonstrated in 100 assessable patients. The primary study end point was objective response rate (ORR).


ORR was 44% [95% confidence interval (CI) 29% to 59%] in arm A versus 48% (95% CI, 33% to 62%) in arm B. Progression-free survival was 7.5 versus 8.9 months (hazard ratio: 1.0) and overall survival was 22.7 versus 18.7 months (hazard ratio: 0.86) in arms A versus B, respectively.


This is the first head to head comparison of cetuximab versus bevacizumab in first-line treatment of mCRC. In the present evaluation of patients with KRAS-mutated tumours, neither strategy demonstrated a clearly superior outcome.

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