Genentech, a member of the Roche Group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY), today announced results from the positive Phase III AVAglio study. The study showed Avastin ® (bevacizumab) in combination with radiation and temozolomide chemotherapy reduced the risk of cancer worsening or death (progression-free survival; PFS) by 36 percent compared to radiation and temozolomide chemotherapy plus placebo (HR=0.64; p<0.0001) in people with newly diagnosed glioblastoma, the most common and aggressive form of primary brain cancer. PFS assessed by trial investigators was a co-primary endpoint for the study. The interim results for overall survival (OS), the other co-primary endpoint, did not reach statistical significance (HR=0.89; p=0.2135). Final data on OS are expected in 2013. The data were presented today at the 17 th Annual Meeting of the Society for Neuro-Oncology in Washington, D.C.
No new safety findings were observed in the AVAglio study and adverse events were consistent with those seen in previous trials of Avastin across tumor types for approved indications. Adverse events of special interest (all Grades) that occurred more often in the Avastin arm compared to the radiation and chemotherapy arm (>2 percent increased incidence) were bleeding in mucous/skin linings (26.7 percent vs. 8.9 percent) or other regions of the body excluding the brain (11.6 percent vs. 8.1 percent), high blood pressure (37.5 percent vs. 13 percent), too much protein in the urine (proteinuria; 14 percent vs. 4 percent) and blood clots (arterial thromboembolic; 5.0 percent vs. 1.6 percent).
Avastin is currently approved in the United States under the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) accelerated approval program for the treatment of adults with glioblastoma who have progressive disease following prior therapy. In glioblastoma, it is approved for use as a single therapy and not in combination with other therapies. The effectiveness of Avastin is based on improvement in objective response rate. Currently, no data are available from randomized controlled trials demonstrating improvement in disease-related symptoms or increased survival with Avastin in glioblastoma.