Antiangiogenic agents in combination with chemotherapy for the treatment of epithelial ovarian cancer.
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this review was to provide an overview of angiogenesis, including the rationale for targeting angiogenesis as a treatment strategy for epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) and to discuss available clinical trial data with antiangiogenic agents in EOC, with a focus on combinations with chemotherapy. METHODS: This was a literature review of clinical studies evaluating select antiangiogenic agents in combination with traditional cytotoxic chemotherapy for the treatment of EOC. RESULTS: Several therapies that target angiogenesis-specific pathways are undergoing clinical development for EOC. Although some of these agents have demonstrated single-agent activity for EOC, there is considerable interest in combining this treatment strategy with chemotherapy in an effort to potentially improve treatment benefits in this patient population. Bevacizumab, an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) monoclonal antibody, is the most studied antiangiogenic agent in EOC and has shown efficacy as monotherapy and combined with chemotherapy in both the relapsed/recurrent and first-line settings. However, results from recent phase 3 trials raise questions regarding patient selection and optimal dose, schedule, and duration of bevacizumab therapy. Other agents in various phases of testing include aflibercept (VEGF Trap), a fusion protein that binds all isoforms of VEGF; multitargeted antiangiogenic tyrosine kinase inhibitors (eg, BIBF 1120, cediranib, pazopanib, sorafenib); and AMG 386, a selective angiopoietin inhibitor. Toxicities associated with VEGF inhibition are also a concern with antiangiogenic therapy, including hypertension, proteinuria, thromboses, and gastrointestinal perforation. CONCLUSIONS: Results from recently completed and ongoing clinical trials combining antiangiogenic agents with chemotherapy are awaited in hopes of expanding therapeutic options for patients with EOC.
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