Author(s): Allegra CJ, Yothers G, OConnell MJ, Sharif S, Petrelli NJ
PURPOSE: The National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project C-08 trial was designed to investigate the safety and efficacy of adding bevacizumab to modified FOLFOX6 (mFOLFOX6; ie, infusional/bolus fluorouracil, leucovorin, and oxaliplatin) for the adjuvant treatment of patients with stages II to III colon cancer. METHODS: Patients received mFOLFOX6 every 2 weeks for 26 weeks alone or modified as FOLFOX6 + bevacizumab (5 mg/kg every 2 weeks for 52 weeks [ie, experimental group]). The primary end point was disease-free survival (DFS). RESULTS: Among 2,672 analyzed patients, demographic factors were well balanced by treatment. With a median follow-up of 35.6 months, the addition of bevacizumab to mFOLFOX6 did not result in an overall significant increase in DFS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.89; 95% CI, 0.76 to 1.04; P = .15). The point estimates for 3-year DFS for the overall population were 77.4% and 75.5% for the experimental and control arms, respectively. For patients with stages II and III diseases, these same estimates were 87.4% and 84.7%, respectively, for stage II and 74.2% and 72.4%, respectively, for stage III. Exploratory analyses found that the effect of bevacizumab on DFS was different before and after a 15-month landmark (time-by-treatment interaction P value < .0001). Bevacizumab had a strong effect before the landmark (HR, 0.61; 95% CI, 0.48 to 0.78; P < .001) but no significant effect after (HR, 1.22; 95% CI, 0.98 to 1.52; P = .076). CONCLUSION: Bevacizumab for 1 year with mFOLFOX6 does not significantly prolong DFS in stages II and III colon cancer. However, a significant but transient effect during bevacizumab exposure was observed in the experimental arm. We postulate that this observation reflects a biologic effect during bevacizumab exposure. Given the lack of improvement in DFS, the use of bevacizumab cannot be recommended for use in the adjuvant treatment of patients with colon cancer.