Uracil-Tegafur and Oral Leucovorin Combined With Bevacizumab in Elderly Patients (Aged ≥ 75 Years) With Metastatic Colorectal Cancer: A Multicenter, Phase II Trial (Joint Study of Bevacizumab, Oral Leucovorin, and Uracil-Tegafur in Elderly Patients [J-BLUE] Study)

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We previously reported that uracil-tegafur with oral leucovorin (UFT/LV) treatment for elderly patients (aged ≥ 75 years) was well-tolerated in a phase II study. In the present study, the efficacy and safety of a modified (1-week shorter administration period) UFT/LV schedule combined with bevacizumab for a similar population are reported.

Patients and Methods

The present study was a single-arm, open-label, multicenter, cooperative group clinical trial. The key eligibility criteria included age ≥ 75 years, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status 0 or 1, first-line chemotherapy, measurable lesions, and preserved organ function. Patients received UFT 300 mg/m2/d and LV 75 mg/d on days 1 to 21 and intravenous bevacizumab 5 mg/kg on days 1 and 15. Treatment was repeated every 28 days. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS), and the secondary endpoints were the objective response rate (ORR), overall survival (OS), and safety.


Of the 55 patients enrolled from 15 Japanese institutions, 52 eligible patients were evaluated. Their median age was 80 years (range, 75-87 years), and 73% had an ECOG performance status of 0. The median PFS was 8.2 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 6.2-10 months). The ORR was 40% (95% CI, 27%-55%). The median OS was 23 months (95% CI, 12-33 months). The most common grade 3 and 4 treatment-related adverse events were hypertension (12%), fatigue (8%), anemia (8%), nausea (6%), and diarrhea (6%). Treatment-related death occurred in 2 patients.


UFT/LV (3 weeks of therapy and 1 week without) combined with biweekly bevacizumab is a tolerable and effective treatment option for elderly patients (aged ≥ 75 years) with metastatic colorectal cancer.


In the present phase II trial of 55 elderly patients (aged ≥ 75 years) with previously untreated metastatic colorectal cancer, we investigated the efficacy and safety of the combination of uracil-tegafur with oral leucovorin (UFT/LV) and bevacizumab. UFT/LV plus bevacizumab resulted in promising efficacy outcomes with mild toxicity and should be validated in future largescale studies of elderly patients.

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