Ovarian Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

Gemcitabine Plus Bevacizumab for Platinum-Resistant Gynecologic Cancers

By: Dana A. Elya, MS, RD, CDN
Posted: Monday, May 4, 2020

The combination chemotherapy of gemcitabine and bevacizumab appears to be safe and effective in treating patients with platinum-resistant recurrent epithelial ovarian, primary peritoneal, or fallopian tube cancer, according to a phase II study conducted by Shoji Nagao, MD, PhD, of the Hyogo Cancer Center, Japan, and colleagues. The research was published in the Journal of Ovarian Research. The authors noted that this combination chemotherapy may be studied further in a randomized clinical trial.

The study included a total of 19 patients with platinum-resistant recurrent epithelial ovarian, primary peritoneal, or fallopian tube cancer. The patients received bevacizumab at 15 mg/kg intravenously on day 1 and gemcitabine at 1,000 mg/m2 intravenously on days 1 and 8 every 21 days until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. The primary endpoint was the completion rate of three cycles of chemotherapy.

Of the 19 patients, 18 received at least three cycles and 9 received at least six cycles of the combination therapy. The objective response rate was 42%, with a complete response rate of 16% and a partial response rate of 26%. The clinical control rate was 84%. The median progression-free survival was 5.1 months, and the median overall survival was 21.3 months.

Hematologic toxicity included grade 3 or 4 neutropenia in 9 patients, grade 3 or 4 anemia in 2 patients, and grade 3 or 4 thrombocytopenia in 1 patient. One patient had grade 3 hypertension, and another patient had grade 3 protein urea.

“Quality of life during administration of gemcitabine and bevacizumab combination therapy was believed to be good, as refusal to continue chemotherapy was rare. To strengthen the availability of this combination chemotherapy, quality-of-life assessments may be essential in further studies,” authors concluded.

Disclosure: The authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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