Roche's Avastin Shows Mixed Results in Glioblastoma

Published: Nov 23, 2012

A new study of Roche's Avastin has shown the drug can extend progression-free survival (PFS) by more than four months when added onto standard therapy for an aggressive form of brain cancer. The AVAglio trial found that adding Avastin (bevacizumab) to radiation and temozolomide chemotherapy reduced the risk of cancer progression by 36 per cent, extending PFS from 6.2 months with placebo to 10.6 months, in newly-diagnosed glioblastoma patients. Roche's drug also had significant benefits on health-related quality of life measures - such as allowing patients to live independently for longer - and reduced use of concomitant therapies such as corticosteroids. Avastin is already approved in Europe to treat colorectal cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, kidney cancer and ovarian cancer, and is available in the US for colorectal cancer, non-small cell lung cancer and kidney cancer and also as a monotherapy for glioblastoma that has progressed despite prior treatment. "People with newly diagnosed glioblastoma have few treatment options and need new medicines," said Hal Barron, Novartis' chief medical officer and head of global product development, adding the plans to discuss the results with regulatory authorities.

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