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Aflibercept and Docetaxel versus Docetaxel alone after platinum failure in patients with advanced or metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer: a randomized, controlled phase III trial.

PURPOSE: To compare the efficacy of aflibercept (ziv-aflibercept), a recombinant human fusion protein targeting the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) pathway, with or without docetaxel in platinum-pretreated patients with advanced or metastatic nonsquamous non-small-cell lung cancer.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: In this international, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase III trial, 913 patients were randomly assigned to (ziv-)aflibercept 6 mg/kg intravenous (IV; n = 456) or IV placebo (n = 457), both administered every 3 weeks and in combination with docetaxel 75 mg/m(2). The primary end point was overall survival (OS). Other efficacy outcomes, safety, and immunogenicity were also assessed.

RESULTS: Patient characteristics were balanced between arms; 12.3% of patients had received prior bevacizumab. (Ziv-)Aflibercept did not improve OS (hazard ratio [HR], 1.01; 95% CI, 0.87 to 1.17; stratified log-rank P = .90). The median OS was 10.1 months (95% CI, 9.2 to 11.6 months) for (ziv-)aflibercept and 10.4 months (95% CI, 9.2 to 11.9 months) for placebo. In exploratory analyses, median progression-free survival was 5.2 months (95% CI, 4.4 to 5.6 months) for (ziv-)aflibercept versus 4.1 months (95% CI, 3.5 to 4.3 months) for placebo (HR, 0.82; 95% CI, 0.72 to 0.94; P = .0035); overall response rate was 23.3% of evaluable patients (95% CI, 19.1% to 27.4%) in the (ziv-)aflibercept arm versus 8.9% (95% CI, 6.1% to 11.6%; P < .001) in the placebo arm. Grade ≥ 3 adverse events occurring more frequently in the (ziv-)aflibercept arm versus the placebo arm were neutropenia (28.0% v 21.1%, respectively), fatigue (11.1% v 4.2%, respectively), stomatitis (8.8% v 0.7%, respectively), and hypertension (7.3% v 0.9%, respectively).

CONCLUSION: The addition of (ziv-)aflibercept to standard docetaxel therapy did not improve OS. In exploratory analyses, secondary efficacy end points did seem to be improved in the (ziv-)aflibercept arm. The study regimen was associated with increased toxicities, consistent with known anti-VEGF and chemotherapy-induced events.

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