The safety and efficacy of first-line atezolizumab plus bevacizumab in patients with unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma: A multicenter real-world study from Turkey

Akyildiz A., Guven D. C., Ozluk A. A., Ismayilov R., Mutlu E., Unal O. U., ...More

Medicine, vol.102, no.45, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 102 Issue: 45
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1097/md.0000000000035950
  • Journal Name: Medicine
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


The aim of the study was to evaluate the real-world clinical outcomes of atezolizumab and bevacizumab (Atez/Bev) as the initial therapy for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We retrospectively analyzed 65 patients treated with Atez/Bev for advanced HCC from 22 institutions in Turkey between September 2020 and March 2023. Responses were evaluated by RECIST v1.1 criteria. The median progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were calculated using the Kaplan-Meier method. Cox regression model was employed to conduct multivariate analyses. The median age was 65 (range, 22-89) years, and 83.1% of the patients were male. A total of 1.5% achieved a complete response, 35.4% had a partial response, 36.9% had stable disease, and 26.2% had progressive disease. The disease control rate was 73.8% and associated with alpha-fetoprotein levels at diagnosis and concomitant antibiotic use. The incidence rates of any grade and grade ≥ 3 adverse events were 29.2% and 10.7%, respectively. At a median follow-up of 11.3 (3.4-33.3) months, the median PFS and OS were 5.1 (95% CI: 3-7.3) and 18.1 (95% CI: 6.2-29.9) months, respectively. In univariate analyses, ECOG-PS ≥ 1 (relative to 0), Child-Pugh class B (relative to A), neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) > 2.9 (relative to ≤ 2.9), and concomitant antibiotic use significantly increased the overall risk of mortality. Multivariate analysis revealed that ECOG-PS ≥ 1 (HR: 2.69, P = .02), NLR > 2.9 (HR: 2.94, P = .017), and concomitant antibiotic use (HR: 4.18, P = .003) were independent predictors of OS. Atez/Bev is an effective and safe first-line therapy for advanced-stage HCC in a real-world setting. The survival benefit was especially promising in patients with a ECOG-PS score of 0, Child-Pugh class A, lower NLR, and patients who were not exposed to antibiotics during the treatment.