Hollings Cancer Center, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, USA.
Gibbs Cancer Center and Research Institute, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Spartanburg, South Carolina, USA.
Department of Oncology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA.
New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA.
GI Oncology Research, Sarah Canon Research Institute, Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
California Pacific Medical Center, San Francisco, California, USA.
Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California, USA.
To investigate the clinical efficacy and tolerability of the combination of bevacizumab (B) and erlotinib (E) compared to sorafenib (S) as first-line treatment for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
A total of 90 patients with advanced HCC, Child-Pugh class A-B7 cirrhosis, and no prior systemic therapy were randomly assigned (1: 1) to receive either 10 mg/kg B intravenously every 14 days and 150 mg E orally daily (n = 47) (B+E) or 400 mg S orally twice daily (n = 43). The primary endpoint was overall survival (OS). Secondary endpoints included event-free survival (EFS), objective response rate based on Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors (RECIST 1.1), time to progression, and safety and tolerability.
The median OS was 8.55 months (95% CI: 7.00-13.9) for patients treated with B+E and 8.55 months (95% CI: 5.69-12.2) for patients receiving S. The hazard ratio (HR) for OS was 0.92 (95% CI: 0.57-1.47). The median EFS was 4.37 months (95% CI: 2.99-7.36) for patients receiving B+E and 2.76 months (95% CI: 1.84-4.80) for patients receiving S. The HR for EFS was 0.67 (95% CI: 0.42-1.07; p = 0.09), favoring B+E over S. When OS was assessed among patients who were Child-Pugh class A, the median OS was 11.4 months (95% CI: 7.5-15.7) for patients treated with B+E (n = 39) and 10.26 months (95% CI: 5.9-13.0) for patients treated with S (n = 38) (HR = 0.88; 95% CI: 0.53-1.46).
There was no difference in efficacy between the B+E and S arms, although the safety and tolerability profile tended to favor B+E over S based on competing risk analysis.