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Efficacy and safety of anti-epidermal growth factor receptor therapy compared with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy for metastatic colorectal cancer in first-line and second-line therapies: a meta-analysis

Authors Wang H, Ma B, Gao P, Song Y, Xu Q, Hu Y, Zhang C, Wang Z

Received 23 April 2016

Accepted for publication 6 July 2016

Published 30 August 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 5405—5416


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Min Li

Hongchi Wang,* Bin Ma,* Peng Gao, Yongxi Song, Qingzhou Xu, Yaoyuan Hu, Cong Zhang, Zhenning Wang

Department of Surgical Oncology and General Surgery, The First Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Aim: This study aimed to compare anti-epidermal growth factor receptor (anti-EGFR) therapy and anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy as first-line and second-line therapies in patients with KRAS exon 2 codon 12/13 wild-type (KRAS-WT) metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC).
Methods: Major databases were systematically searched. The hazard ratio (HR), odds ratio (OR), and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were used to estimate the effect measures. Review Manager software version 5.3 was used for statistical analysis.
Results: Seven trials including ten articles were eligible in the meta-analysis. The patients treated with anti-EGFR as first-line therapy showed a longer overall survival (OS) for KRAS-WT and all RAS wild-type (RAS-WT) mCRC (HR =0.81, 95% CI: 0.72–0.92, P<0.01, n=5; HR =0.78, 95% CI: 0.66–0.93, P<0.01, n=3, respectively). The objective response rate (ORR) was better with the anti-EGFR therapy for KRAS-WT and all RAS-WT mCRC (OR =1.32, 95% CI: 1.11–1.56, P<0.01, n=5; OR =1.55, 95% CI: 1.21–2.00, P<0.01, n=3, respectively). There was no difference in progression-free survival (PFS) for KRAS-WT mCRC and all RAS-WT mCRC between the two groups (HR =1.00; 95% CI: 0.92–1.09, P=0.99, n=4; HR =0.92, 95% CI: 0.71–1.19, P=0.52, n=3, respectively). In addition, two trials provided data on the second-line therapy; there was no significant difference in OS and PFS for the second-line therapy, but a significant improvement in ORR was found in the anti-EGFR group (OR =1.91, 95% CI: 1.16–3.16, P=0.01, n=2). No difference in the conversion therapy (OR =1.34; 95% CI: 0.91–1.99; P=0.14, n=4) was observed between the two therapies.
Conclusion: Our results indicate that anti-EGFR therapy is superior to anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy for OS and ORR as a first-line therapy for KRAS-WT mCRC. In the second-line therapy, there was no significant difference in the survival outcomes on the basis of OS and PFS between the two groups. However, ORR improved significantly in the anti-EGFR group.

Keywords: colorectal cancer, anti-EGFR, anti-VEGF, chemotherapy, meta-analysis

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